Showing posts with label dyeing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dyeing. Show all posts

Sunday, 25 March 2012


When people ask me what my hobbies are, I immediately say patchwork, then beading and finally spinning/dyeing. Recently my granddaughter asked me for some pictures of our sheep for a school project, and I realised just how involved I am with them.
This is the first lamb born last year. The ewe had twins, but she rejected the second lamb, which was very weak, so my husband bottle-fed it.
Our ram was also hand-reared by my husband. The sheep are really friendly, and always come over to see what you are doing.
 I got given this fleece by one of the islanders. It is a Jacob/Suffolk cross. In the picture above part of the fleece has been washed and then it is carded on a drum 
The carded wool feels so soft, after it is taken off the drum carder. It can be spun on the spinning wheel. or felted.
 This is actually a felted bag shape (below), but I did not like it, so I cut a bit off, so that I can make a clutch bag out of it. I intend to embroider the flap.

 I also made some felted balls. One of them is embroidered and another has various types of material and thread embedded in it. I want to experiment more with these. 
 Remember last year I experimented a lot with Kool Aid and a crock pot and got some interesting results.?
 My granddaughters using a diz, so that it is nice and easy to spin.
 A variety of colours for selling.
 This year I have started experimenting with natural dyes, and I have organised a dyeing workshop to take place in June, with the tutor coming from another island. It should be great fun. 
I am amazed just how involved I have become with wool. Now I will just have to learn how to feed the sheep and it will be a full circle (and also please my husband no end!)
Till next time.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Too Pooped to Pop! (photo heavy!)

I've had a really busy time since I last posted here. I think I told you about the Sanday Soulka Weekends, which have been happening each month. We have just had the Wrecks and Signals Weekend, and it was thoroughly enjoyable. The Sanday Spinners were having an Open studio, at one of the members' conservatories, so I decided to make some things for sale. I dyed a whole lot of fleece with Kool Aid, carded it and made up some bags with fleece and co-ordinating beads. I also machine embroidered some bags. 

(Sorry about the quality and I forgot to photograph the other designs!) 
Three of the embroidered bags sold, but nobody was interested in the beady fleece bags. 
Here you can see my husband having a go at carding. You can see some of the carded fleece in the background, some drying on my ruler shelf and some soaking in the sink. It is great fun to do, and I want to go on to natural dyeing from here.
Back to the Soulka Weekend. We had a talk on shipwrecks then a concert  with Frank Keenan and Logan's Well on the Friday. On the Saturday I went spinning and met some visitors to Sanday, who had come over for the Soulka. 
We went on a tour of the buildings which were left over from the war. Seemingly the army requisitioned some land and the islanders did not know what was going happening in the camp. It was extremely top secret. The first building we saw was the morgue -

Only two people were killed on the island during the war, and the bodies were brought into this building.

 There are still no details about what happened here during the war, but it was supposedly extremely important. This building was enormous, and it was surrounded by mines. The army was supposed to get rid of them after the war, but the farmer had to drag a wheel behind the back of a tractor and set it going, so that he wasn't blown up tilling the ground.

The shaped concrete at the front was where the diesel was housed.
This was a communication shelter, and would have had a huge antenna on top. 
After this, we had a lecture on the Rev. M Armour, who sought land reform for the crofters in Sanday.
(The following pictures are not mine. I forgot to take my camera with me!)

The Kirkwall City Pipe Band played (and marched!) in the school playground later, and then we had another concert inside. 

It was fantastic!! The pipe band leader was really funny and so enthusiastic!! He said music and learning music should be fun and the concert definitely was!! We then had a dance and at 11.30pm a huge supper was brought out, sandwiches, pizza, sausage rolls, pies and cakes. The next day they played again, but less formally (grin!!)
What a difference!! There was a 7km run in the afternoon, a balloon race and more music from the band. I have only told you about the things we attended, but there were loads of other things on offer, including Open Studios, talks and workshops. What a weekend!!

Last night and this morning the Sanday Spinners did some indigo dyeing. I will tell you about it in the next post. We have had glorious weather recently. We went for a walk on the beach and had a paddle. Then I came home and had a snooze!!

Till next time.