All the beautiful sunshine

The natural dyeing has been so enjoyable and has quite kept me engaged and busy.  What a lovely rabbit hole to fall down.  I love seeing what I can produce by mixing a bit here and there.  I did order some liquid botanical dyes from http://www.botanicalcolors as I wanted more freedom to mix colors and I feel liquids give me better control.  I am still playing with plants and have planted several beds full of cosmos, dahlias, zinnias, marigolds, and coreoposis.  My plan for those is to eco dye sock blanks mixing and mingling the flowers with leaves and berries.  I find myself looking at every plant with renewed interest in its possible uses for dye.

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I did put tags on the yarn, originally it was to sell some on Etsy, but then I could not decide what to part with….but the tags do help me remember what dyes and process I used.  I do need to list some however….

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Unfortunately I have ran out of yarn to dye until another order arrives.  But my yard has kept me busy enough.  I wanted leeks and onions but they need a lot of sun.  I’m hoping these containers will work.  I placed them in a nice sunny spot on the porch.  They may be a terrible eyesore, but I can live with that.

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I was a bit surprised to see my bird house had been taken over by bumble bees.  But a quick search on the internet and it is not uncommon.  Just leave them be and they will be gone in July or August.  Bees are so precious that I certainly do not want to upset this little hive and they don’t mind me a bit either.

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I am most pleased with how everything is growing.  After the big disappointment last year it is so excited to see little shoots sprouting!

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I cleaned out a big invasive mint patch and threw it in a pot to make a dye.  I boiled it off and on for a few days and then strained out the leaves and put the liquid in a pot to await more yarn.  The house smelled amazing while this pot was boiling!

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I had a bit of chard that overwintered so I had a bit of a nice little meal of it.  It was wonderful sautéed in a bit of veggie broth with salt and pepper for taste.  Simple yet delicious!

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I was thrilled to have a visit by Christina and two sweet peas!  We made the best use of the time and went to yard sales where they all found treasures, thrifts shops for more treasures, and then a stop in for cake.  We had a grand time indeed!  Oh how I miss them all!!

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With the completion of the impressionist mystery kal, I was finally able to get back to working on my Jujuy shawl. I just love how this is knitting up.  It is really an easy and enjoyable knit and progresses rapidly.  The yarn I am using is my own dyed; avocado for the ivory and madder for the peach.

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I also finally got around to casing on another pair of socks.  I completed my May socks (see below) and now onto June.  These are for the boxosockskal by Kristin of Voolenvine. These are in my hand dyed cochineal color way.  The yarn is quite tonal and I love it!  This will be a pair of the roller socks.

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I shared this shawl last week but also added a picture of it being worn.  My investment in the proper blocking tools has made a world of difference in my finishing!

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And here are my finished May socks.  I loved this yarn and this is the second pair of socks I have knitted with it.  I have one more skein in a red and black stripe which I will knit up soon.  It is a German yarn and I cannot remember the brand but it is in one of my past blogs.  I used a bit of left over yarn for a contrasting heel and toe.  I wish I had put in a contrasting cuff but it was too late when I thought to do it as I was at the first heel.

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With my thrifting bug and love of all things yarny, I got a wild hair to grab a few cashmere sweaters to unravel and knit into socks.  I found these two pieces at goodwill for $4.

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It is a slow process but you do get one long continuous piece from the body in a well made higher end sweater.  I will put the yarn onto a knitty noddy, hank it, and then soak it to relax the crimping and clean the yarn.  I cannot wait to cast on some cashmere socks.  I’m still undecided if I will unravel the ivory sweater as it is so big soft and cozy.  I may just use it as an oversized about the house winter sweater.

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While at my natural groceries I found another issue of Taproot.  It is such a lovely little magazine!  I can never resist picking up the latest issue.

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Well it was a pretty darn good weekend for the estate sales.  Two within a few blocks.  For the first I arrived a good hour before they opened to get my seat in line next to my bestie and partner in crime.  Of course she was there even earlier than I was….I guess we are crazy estate sale ladies….

My take aways for the week?  This lovely wooden bowl.  I almost didn’t buy it.  I kept debating, but when I got it home and looked closely at how lovely it is…oh I am so delighted I did.  It is really a piece of art!

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And Hummels!  There were this many more but since my bestie also collects them we must divide them between us….a very difficult tasks indeed!  But look at these little sweeties!  Oh my that basket girl is just too much and the little girl with the lantern…so adorable!

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I saw this beauty and the price was so low so I thought well wouldn’t that be just perfect on my desk or in my lovely pink sewing room.  It’s not the age or quality of my precious one from my grandmother, but it is gorgeous and was being sold for pennies.

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I do love beautiful things.  I get much joy in surrounding myself with items that remind me of my parents, aunts, and grandmothers.  It has only been in the past years that these items have become affordable as their values have plummeted due to no demand.  I can now find a Hummel for as low as $5, Fenton pieces I have found for as low as $1, and beautiful old dark wood furniture pieces have dropped from the thousands to the low hundreds and below.  It is quite nice as they can now be more readily enjoyed by all and not just stuck away for fear of being broken due to an inflated value.

I find that I spend far too much time on my phone doing puzzles so decided it was time to ditch the virtual puzzles and get physical.  When the girls were growing up we always had a puzzle in progress and my mother tells me I was doing puzzles from the time I was tiny.  I do so enjoy a good jigsaw puzzle!

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Work is going well, I am starting my second month.  It is a small little community nestled in a wooded area and very cute and cottagey.  It is a good company and I have inherited some darn amazing staff so that is half the battle right there.  But as in all cases when a new administrator is hired there is a reason…. However I am quite content and find myself enjoying the job.

And now off to play around in the yard.  I have some yard art pieces that I never got around to putting up and there is no time like the present.

Happy day, happy life,

Patricia

 

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