Monday, March 01, 2010

Looking for Color? Start Hand Dyeing with My Creative Friend Gail Callahan’s New Book Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece

I am lucky to live in an area of the country where it seems to be over-run with creative types of people. I landed here because The Farmer, my husband, was lucky to be born here and I married him. Although we spent the first 15 years of our marriage in eastern Massachusetts, we both yearned to move to “The Happy Valley” where our sheep have always lived. It’s been almost eleven years since we have lived here full-time and I can’t imagine living anywhere else now. The funny thing about living here though is that because so many creative types work by themselves and for themselves, they tend to hide amongst the hills and valleys of all the little tiny towns in this incredibly naturally beautiful area. I know. I’m one of them, hiding out in my own little world doing my own thing in my little cocoon. It makes for decent productivity but can also be stifling. It’s one reason I write this blog – so that I can feel a part of some kind of world since I no longer frequent a watercooler.

So where do I find and meet new friends, you wonder? First off, I have a daughter named Julia and through her I have met many parents, doctors, nurses, librarians, and all those other people who work at the places we frequent. And then there are the many independently owned places of business we shop at, like Foster’s Supermarket. Oh, how I love this store. It is little gem in the land of overly big, buy everything you don’t need, world of giant supermarkets. I can pretty much find whatever I need there at a fair price. It was at Foster’s that I first met Gail Callahan. I was at the deli and I saw a woman looking at me kind of funny. I thought to myself, “Must be a knitter,” because once in a great while a knitter will recognize me. The tell-tale clue is usually a handknit scarf or hat and that tips me off right away. So there was this attractive woman and her husband shopping and she stopped me and asked me if I was “Kristin Nicholas.” I answered “Yes, I was” and we then went into the normal knitterly chat. She was very nice and I found out she worked part-time at Webs and she also did some hand dyeing. What I didn’t realize is that this woman was “The Kangaroo Dyer” and that she was a bit of a cult icon in the world of hand dyed knitting yarns.

Fast forward a couple years and Gail and I have become friends through knitting and color. Gail has been working on a book on hand dyeing edited by Gwen Steege at Storey who was also my editor for Colorful Stitchery and Kristin Knits. We now meet up for coffee with a mutual friend Lisa Newman and try to support each other in our various creative pursuits. And so that leads me, finally, to the purpose of this post. I want to tell you all about Gail’s just released fabulous new book Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece.

Storey Publishing kindly sent me Gail’s new book and I have spent the past couple days reading through it. First off, I want to say, if you have ever wanted to learn to dye yarn or fleece, BUY THIS BOOK. I learned to dye fabrics and yarn in college from my different art professors and so I have never been fearful of taking some old yarn and turning it another shade. It is very easy, believe me. One thing I do knowh though is that most people have the fear of the unknown and even though a project may be easy, it is just the fear of not knowing how to do something that stops them from trying it. If that is your personality, just know that it is human to fear the unknown and try to work your way through it. A good how-to book always helps!


So, here’s my question? Are you just crazy nutty over the beautifully seductive hand dyed yarn you see in your local yarnstore but you just can’t afford to purchase any? Do you have a large stash of yarn in colors that you just can’t fathom knitting anymore? Then you need Gail’s book. In Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece, she breaks down hand dyeing into small, easy to manage steps. She tells you how to set up a safe, temporary dye studio in your own kitchen, and she teaches you how to dye yarn and fiber in a very easy to understand way. She even teaches you how to use a microwave and a crock pot to set the color.


Besides all the fabulous technical how-to, Gail also includes a very useful chapter on learning about Color Theory. She teaches several whimsical methods of easy dyeing including hand painting, dip dyeing, dyeing fleece and roving, dyeing cones of yarn and balls of yarn, immersion dyeing, tie-dyeing, and many more creative methods of dyeing yarn (including one she calls Mozzarella Dyeing and another she calls Parking Meter Yarn).


Gail discusses the different kinds of acid dyes you can purchase (sources given in the appendix too) and how to use them safely. She starts it off simple with dyeing paper towels with food coloring and then leads you through all the other more technical but not too difficult stuff. At the back of the book, there are several knitting and crochet patterns which use the hand dyed yarns in projects including socks, scarves, mittens, and a baby sweater.


You can purchase a signed copy of Hand Dyeing Yarn And Fleece directly from Gail on her website here. It's always good to support a hard-working author. Or look for it at your local yarn or bookstore. You can see more photos from her book on Gail's blog here.

For all you yarnstores reading, I have an idea for you. Teach a class on hand dyeing using Gail’s book. You can turn some of those odd skeins of light and medium colors of wool and other protein fibers you can’t get rid of into something fun and fanciful and stimulate your customer’s desire for creativity.


And if you did finally get to the end of this long winded post today, I have a reward for you. Storey Publishing has kindly donated a copy of Gail’s book as a Giveaway on my blog. To enter, leave a comment about your favorite color or your experience dyeing in my comments section with an easy way to get a hold of you. PLEASE, make this easy for me! The giveaway ends Thursday March 4th at 3 p.m. I will announce the winner here on my blog Friday morning and you’ll have until Tuesday March 9th to get a hold of me.

Reminder - R.J. Julia Booksellers - This coming Friday evening at 7 p.m. in Madison, CT, I'm giving a talk called "The Joy of Color." Please spread the word! I tried to contact knitting guilds in CT but 6 or the 8 e-mails bounced back!

125 comments:

Laura said...

How exciting! And what a fun book!

I've dabbled with dying yarns. Kool-Aid and food dye was as far as I got, but one can get some amazing results with it!

I love that bright spring green color, and managed a huge skein of it once. Not sure how to do it again.

Our knitting group is doing a weekend getaway, and yarn dying is one of the planned activities. This book would be a great tutor!

Thank you for spreading the word about it!

enjoying your sweatered lambs while I knit,
Laura (laura.pacha@us.army.mil)

robin said...

I've been getting ready to try some hand dying, and I've seen this book and wondered about it. Now you've convinced me...I need it!
I love the color brown (yep). It is so rich and deep and warm. Like chocolate!

Love your blog!

Robin (jrsample@hotsprings.net)

loonyhiker said...

I have never tried dying yarn before but many of my knitting buddies do this. It sounds like this book would definitely be a great motivator for me to give it a try. My favorite color is blue and all shades of blue. I think that is why I like tie-dyed tshirts with blues all over it.

Pat (loonyhiker@charter.net)

JackieLemon said...

I saw a review of this book and put it on my wish list. I want to start experimenting with dying, some greens and yellows, maybe. Could be because I am craving spring right now.

Jackie (pjlemon@roadrunner.com)

Jen said...

I am excited to read this book and, while I don't own a yarn store, I do work at a farm, where we raise cows, goats,sheep, pigs and chickens. Being a knitter and fiber enthusiast, I love to bring fiber-related activities and classes to the farm. That said, I'd be delighted to teach a class on dyeing at the farm, using the fleeces we'll be getting after sheep shearing this spring.

Oh yes--my favorite color is dark blue, but I prefer to knit with green.

Thanks for a great blog!

Jen James
Farm Director, Codman Community Farms
jen@codmanfarm.org
jenjames@gmail.com

Manise said...

I have several favorite colors, but purple is the one I seem to gravitate towards lately.

My only dyeing experience was jar dyeing with a bunch of fibery friends. It was a lot of fun. I learned that a little too much navy turns fiber very black!

I'd love the book. Thanks for the link.

westminster55 said...

I've started spinning which has lead me to dieing to dye--such a slippery slope knitting is. My stash is full of oceany colors-aquas to dark blues

kathy said...

I'd love to learn to dye. My one experiment ended up in ugly stripes of ugly colors!

Sally said...

I love yellow!!! I think yellow is one of those love/hate things. As a result, I'm always looking for the yellow "needle in the haystack" of all the bigger bolder colors when shopping for hand-dyed yarns and fabrics. I would love to be more confident about dyeing my own!

Kar said...

Not sure I could pick a particular color. There are too many that catch my eye. Maybe one day I will have to give this dyeing thing a try. I'm going to have to look for this book. Thanks for sharing. :)

ayarnsnackaday said...

First of all, I read your blog everyday hoping you will post more adorable lamb and wooly sheep pictures....I love the trails through the snow!

I have never tried dyeing or spinning but I would love to try both! My favorite colors to knit are blues and greens....such a calming effect for me.

Thanks!
Abbey Embry

Jennifer and Steve said...

The book looks great! I am currently weaving with some churro wool dyed in madder, cota & bacterial indigo. I don't know that I can pick a favorite, because they all offer something fun. I love that these yarns are dyed in the northern part of our state. NM is really great for fiber with a Fiber Arts Trail even! Hope spring is peaking through winter for you. Jennifer kleiny03@gmail.com

Melissa said...

I had a few days of fun with paste food coloring and wool. And a bit of not-so-much fun with an angora/wool mix that I overdyed because the color that came wasn't the color I expected.

My favorite? FM Red. Wish it would stay that way after a few trips through the laundry.

Jane Prater said...

Dyeing for me is always a crapshoot and I love that. If I knew exactly what I was going to get, it wouldn't be as much fun. I love my microwave.

Jessica said...

I love pink!! In any and all shades!! I also love your blog and your books!!
Jessica
JGSchildkraut@aol.com

Karen said...

Wow - this looks like an awesome book. I have done some dyeing - and really enjoy it - even though I'm not to sure what I am doing. My favorite dyeing experience though is when the members of my spinning group get together (up to about 6 people) and have fun dyeing with koolaid - a super fun get-together.

crazyewe said...

The book looks awesome- lots of how-to pictures are always wonderful. I have yet to dye any yarn, though it is on the list. (I have this weird 70s avocado-colored wool from rowan and I'm not exactly sure why I like it in the first place...). Anyway I love greens and blues and really all the colors that are blue-greens and green-blues. It is a definite toss up as a true favorite between grass green and a light aqua.

b2b2ba said...

And I was just looking up how to dye with Kool Aid last night. How fortuitous! I really want to give hand dyeing a try. Sounds like fun.

My favorite color is deep sapphire blue.

Sara (b2b2ba@live.com)

Mary said...

I've only dyed with Kool-aid so far but this book looks like it would be a great way to learn more about other dye methods. You are fortunate to have such creative friends in your area.
Mary (marymort@aol.com)

Analisa said...

I really do love all color and am now trying to learn more about what works and what doesn't...the mysteries of the color wheel.

I have dyed with easter egg dye, cushings, kool-aid and the ever so wonderful leaves, twigs and bugs. I want to try acid dyes, icing tint and to learn more about manipulating the outcomes.

It really is fun playing the mad scientist and then getting to knit up the results!

jackie said...

Hi, I took some dyeing workshops a few years back and loved it. I love bright colors more on the cool end of the color spectrum. I have been tempeted to try dyeing some bright colors to lift my spirits thru the winter weather that we're stuck in;-)Think Spring!
Jackie C.(jshapir4@nycap.rr.com)

Sara said...

I've done Kool-Aid dyeing. I purchased a Honking Hank from Sheep Shed Studios, which is a 2000 (yes, two thousand) yard skein of undyed Lambs Pride Bulky. I'm hoarding it, waiting for the day I feel comfortable enough to dye it. Love the book and it goes to the top of my must-have list. Great giveaway!

Alchemy said...

My daughter (also a Julia) just asked if we can Kool-Aid dye again. I sorted my stash last week and set aside some natural-colored skeins to dye, so we're ready at my house!

Diane H K in Greenfield said...

I have a terrible confession to make. I have boxes and boxes of handspun and millspun from my own sheep, and it's all undyed. I have an unreasonable panic about learning to dye. I have some equipment already, but don't know how to start. It's so pathetic.

I love so many colors, no real favorites! Probably comes from having been through art school and years of color theory.

You know how to reach me should I win the giveaway, I think.

Lindsey said...

I've spent the winter with Green, but my favorite color family is Blue. I grew up near San Francisco and I love the foggy grey-blue. Now that I think about it I love all greyed tones of the various colors, but how crazy is it to announce that your favorite color is Grey? But really,
grey comes in so many colors .

Turtle said...

I always try to find something fun for my mom and i to do when she comes west from NH for a visit, a few falls back i signed us up for a dye class that taught the fair isle style, but for us it was also our first dye experience (aside from a kool aid i tried once) We were hooked! I have not tried dyeing fleece yet and have pretty much stuck with the style i was taught, even have a small area set up in the garage compliments of the local good will!

It's weird on color, for me i do not really care for lots of yellow, but when asked what my favorite flower color? It would be yellow, so not sure where my love/hate relationship developed with yellow.

I would SOO love to read her book and try some new techniques! We have an early spring and the garage is warmer and ready to start dyeing!

cjbell said...

What a wonderful book!! I have always wanted to start dyeing yarn, but lacked guidance. This book seems to be the perfect solution. thanks.

Favorite color? purples, blues, teals. I don't like stripes.

Carla in MT

Wendelene said...

Ok, like many others, I've never had the courage to dye my own. It sounds like this book might be the hand holder I need!

tcrpm said...

My favorite dyeing experience was using eucalyptus leaves...resulting in a rusty orange yarn! Fun stuff!!

Connie
tcrpm@sonic.net

Diana said...

I've recently started spinning and really want to try dyeing up some fleece and combed top to spin. But I am just not sure how to go about it. Maybe this book has the answer!

Anonymous said...

The very first time I dyed yarn, I used Kool-Aid. The colors turned out great and the yarn smelled good too.

Evelyn said...

I bought some Rowan's Big Wool in an unpleasant shade of tan for $2 a skein and used Wilton's Food Coloring to change it to Leaf Green, which I then knit up into the cushion seen here: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/LosttheThread/basket-weave-cushion
I want to do more dying! Hope I win. Contact me as Lostthethread on Ravelry!

Anita Loechler said...

I am the 11:28 AM 'Anonymous'. Don't know why it went that way. I'm trying again.

Laurie said...

I would be commenting on this even if there weren't a giveaway involved. I've been wanting to try dyeing for quite some time now but every book I've read makes it sound like some huge, daunting task and I'd need to rent a lab or something before I could even attempt it. I found this book in the library last week, and I can't tell you how excited I am to feel like, yes, I can dye yarn!! My copy is on it's way from amazon. Oh, my favorite color...anything but pastels! You can contact me via my blog or as Luvs2sing on Ravelry.

Anonymous said...

I love the many shades of green...then I get enticed by the many shades of blue and fall madly in love with red...sigh. So much colour to be had in yarn! Have not tried dying, but this book certainly sounds good.

Ytknits
yogi4@nb.sympatico.ca

B. said...

I have used coffee and alum to "antique" some white yarn. Not very adventurous, is it? This sounds like a great book.

barbaragregoryATsympaticoDOTca

Bev said...

back when I lived in California I took a natural dye workshop from an artist that lived in a 100-year-old cabin in the Santa Cruz mountains -- we walked around her property, picked the flowers, worked with the chemicals and did the dying on the stone porch -- it was wonderful

now days I need a more user friendly dye spot, since it gets to cold for porch dying here in the Rocky Mountains in the winter!

I found your blog from a link on Mason Dixon, and I have totally enjoyed your lambs in their little sweaters -- amazing, the black one is my favorite (my friends would say that figures!)

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that you'll dray my name!!

webspinner51ATyahooDOTcom

Andrea said...

Just bought the book and I love it. Run everyone, don't walk, to your local bookstore to get it. You will not be sorry. Clear, easy to understand and great pictures. What more could you ask for in a book. (Well, maybe if it came with a free piece of chocolate, that could be better. But that's about it!)

Southern Gal said...

what a great book that looks to be!

btw the link is broken but her etsy store is up.

http://www.etsy.com/shop/kangaroodyer

Sallie said...

This looks like an excellent book to add to my library. I have not tried dying, but I would like to. Then I could make the perfect shade of PURPLE!

Sallie
tsalib@aol.com

Kere said...

My absolute favorite dyeing experience so far was helping my niece with her science fair project last spring.

We got a skein of silk/merino online (I think it was from Kintpicks) and divided it in four. We left one blank. For dyes we used three packets of Cherry KoolAid for the first set, an acid based dye for the second set and the last set we used dried hibiscus leaves. She we died them all, knitted swatches, blocked them and posted them all on one of those bi-fold science fair boards. The written part of the project talked about how the different dyes worked and why (I lent her some of my yarn books about dying various types of fibers.) She got second in her year at her school and third in the city.

The cool part was that she did just about all the work. I was the designated adult (Tween involved in boiling water and dyes? Really needs an adult!) Her mother and I were drafted to help swatch but that rest of it was all her.

Jan Morrison said...

I love hand-dyeing. I've dyed fleece, wool and tonnes of woolen items - especially cashmere. I like curry colours - cinnamon, saffron, coriander and so on...
I like dyeing with natural dyes and I've used artists' dyes quite a lot too. I feel like a witch when I get my dyeing pot out and start stirring and humming!
I'm at mobudge@ns.sympatico.ca

I'm gonna tell Mom! said...

I purchased this book about 2 weeks ago, and have been slowly digesting it. I recently learned to spin after having been given a fleece from a brother-in-law's sheep, and the next logical step seems to be learning how to dye it! This book makes me believe that I will be successful!
kim

Anonymous said...

My favorite colors when I was a kid were turquoise and magenta, preferably used in combination. I'm not saying that these would now be my first choices for a dye-pot experiment, but maybe once I've gained a bit of expertise. . .
Gretchen (gfgreene at msn dot com)

Wooly Knits n Bits said...

Perfect timing! I have been experiementing with dyes for a few months now. Started with koolaid and easter egg dyes now moving on to acid dyes. I would love a book to show me the tricks of the trade. Love it!

Deborah said...

I am one of those intrepid people you mentioned towards the begining of your post. I have 4 or 5 skeins that I bought with the intention of dying for a project. After doing some preliminary research, I decided to let it wait a while...that was about a year ago.

kroker said...

Really cool!

I've never dyed anything myself, but I looove hand dyed yarn, preferably dyed using old-fashioned, natural dyes.

Not to keen on variegated yarn though - the results are generally sub standard, even if the yarn looks nice in a skein.

/Kicki
(kroker on ravelry)

Anonymous said...

I have been dabbling in dyeing for a couple of years now using leftover easter egg dyes in a nesco roaster at first, and then trying different plants harvested in my garden and on the roadside. I am trying to learn more- I would like to learn how to make my natural dyes more intense.
My funniest experience with this was when young neighbor came and visited while I was hanging out some yarn to dry and he asked me what I was doing. His mom came by later to visit and talk and apparently my little friend was upset and reported to her that I was sick and going to die
Mary Jo

Kate said...

I have yet to try dyeing, but it looks like Gails' book would be really helpful! A favorite color- how does one pick just one? I love pinks (all pinks but especially deep fuschias) and I love blues- especially periwinkle.
Oh- and green! Love greens!
And.....

Angela said...

The one dyeing class I took left me wanting to know more, more more!

And, I'm a huge fan of Gail's work!


I'm ducky on Ravelry.

Joyce said...

I had a very imaginative home economics teacher. We could do anything we could dream up in her class with her encouragement! I made a wrap around skirt and t shirt style shirt and tye dyed them to match. It was great fun! I am just getting a spinning wheel and have been looking for information about how to dye yarn so this book is very appealing to me!

jaycee on Ravelry

Donna S. said...

Have played around with dying just a couple of times with friends. Looks like a great book.

Anne said...

Gail is the nicest lady. She is at WEBS just about whenever I go and I always feel fortunate to have her advice in making color decisions.

The only thing I have ever tried to dye is my daughter's hair. Julia is 15 (as of two days ago!) and has gorgeous, straight, dark brown hair which means that all the blue Kool-Aid and store bought colors have only managed to stain my towels and give the slightest hint of color seen only in direct sunlight!

eight feet said...

Ooh, what an exciting book! My dyeing experience is limited to tie-dyeing but have a number of skeins that would benefit from a change in color/depth. I even purchased a crockpot at a rummage sale to get started. Color favorites for me run in the green and deep red hues. Thanks for pointing out this new book!

Heather Lynne said...

Wow. Dyeing sounds fun after reading your post. Pretty please enter me?

Francie O said...

I've always loved to make tye-dyed shirts as a kid. My first experience with dying was dying wool fabric for rug hooking. I bought a set of acid dyes (red, yellow, blue and black) and a book to mix any color. I've also tried some natural dyes (pokeweed, onion skins). But I much prefer the ease and fun of Kool-aid and Easter egg dyes! It's the kid in me.

Francie in TN

kangaroodyer@kangaroodyer.com said...

Thanks, Kristin, for the shout out about the book! I hope you will "hatch" many new dyers.

Val W said...

Looks like a great book.

I've played around with dyeing for a few years, but I've had very mixed results (at best). Would love to learn how to do it right!

Suzanne said...

Great book. I have some of her yarn in the stash.

I tried dyeing in a turkey roaster and it is a lot of fun. I have a skein that I love that I dyed a turquoise/green color. I have no idea of the yardage but I think it will become some sort of shawl.

Cate said...

I haven't dared to dye wool yet, though I've dyed basket reed in the past - a group of us get together for a dying day each summer.

Favorite colors have always been blues and purples, but find I'm drawn to greens and deep reds in my 50's :)

Cate
JourneyKnitter

emeselle said...

My sister and I have had two misadventures in hand dyeing and the results were not very pretty. We had some good times, though. We used the Kool-Aid technique and ended up with colors that were far more saturated than we had been trying for. An educational book would be a big help :) You can find me on Ravelry, my username is emeselle.

Kathy said...

Dyeing is one of things on my someday "to do" list once my kids get older. I would love to try kool aid dyeing with them when they get a little older, too. My favorite colors are hot pink, turquoise and lime green.

Abby said...

Favorite color? Red, red, red! My experience dyeing? Zero, which is why I want and NEED this book!

PghCathy said...

My 'lambs in sweaters' postcards came today! I'm anxious to use them.

Favorite color...orange hues, tangerine, pumpkin, cinnamon. But my last 5 or 6 projects have been in shades of green. Can't explain it.

I've never tried dyeing yarn. I think the only think I've dyed is when I put lilies of the valley in colored water & stripe them. Experimental, I'm not.

Cathy (jjkerr at verizon dot net)

KnitOneQuiltTooKristin said...

Very cool! I'd love to win that book, it looks great! My most satisfying experience with dyeing was with Judith MacKenzie McCuin when we did some natural dyes, including indigo and cochineal. I'd really love to do the indigo dyeing again. Oh, and the lichen dyeing! That was amazing. The yarn still smells wonderful.

Anonymous said...

I did some dyeing for a textile course I took in grad school; they were all natural dyes, and it was so much fun! I also did tie-dyeing with chemical dyes, but then I found out I was pregnant and had to drop the course--too toxic. I really enjoyed it, though.

If I get lucky, email me at perecman at mindspring dot com. Thanks for the opportunity to win this great-looking book!

Carol

Charlotte said...

The only yarn dyeing I've done was in a Guild workshop. We used Kool-Aid. I've also tried dyeing with RIT in the washer but have trouble with that being colorfast.

My favorite color would be some shade of blue, followed by green and then red.

Julia (mb at diegesis dot net) said...

You write such inspiring reviews! I'd love to have a copy of the book and might have to buy it if you don't choose me :-)

I have just done a little experimentation with hand-dyeing and my absolute favorite skein came about when I was using up the last of the colors, just dabbling them onto the last piece of roving here and there. It didn't look like much when it came out of the dye-pot, but when I spun it up the color spots softened and blurred and mixed into a wonderful subtle rainbow--really a beautiful effect. Not such I could duplicate it again if I tried!

Thanks for your wonderful blog and for the beautiful lambs in sweaters pictures!

Geri said...

I took a dyeing workshop last September and LOVED it! We painted BFL, merino/nylon sock yarn and some lovely seacell. I have ordered a bunch of bare yarn and some Jacquard dyes and my girlfriends (who also took the workshop) and I will be having a dye-fest of our own once the weather gets better. I'd love to own Gail's new book. Please pick me!!! :-)

Minniestitches said...

I would love to be dyeing for my birthday! I've done a fair bit of fabric dyeing but have yet to try wool dyeing.

Emily said...

I am a dyeing novice- let's just say the first time I tried last summer I felted the yarn while dyeing it. And althought the yarn was unknittable, it was a beautiful shade of salmon . . .

Emily

caroline said...

How sweet! My favorite color is deep ruby red followed by deepest indigo.
best way to reach me is dcgaudy (at) bellsouth (dot) net

auntiemichal said...

I'm really enjoying your blog and all the sweet lamb pictures; thank you! As to my favorite color, it's hard to say because it changes so often! I'd have to say that it's the color I'm looking at. Unless it's computer beige! LOL

Roseann said...

I heart green. And after the snowiest winter in Maryland's history, I'm really craving bright, crisp, tulip-stem green. I've never tried dyeing before, but I'm endlessly curious about anything related to fiber. And since for some weird reason, I seem to learn best from books, I'll definitely have to check this one out -- thanks for spreading the word. And of course, thanks for sharing your life, wisdom and fabulous knitting tips and talents with us through your wonderful blog and books. Happy day to you!

Claire said...

I have just found your book - Color By Kristin - and I love it. I'm doing a City & Guilds in Handknitting and I'm on Module 2 - which is all about colour. I also love the idea of being able to dye yarns myself in my own - very tiny - kitchen. Gail's book looks absolutely wonderful and very inspirational. One of the things about doing C&G is that you're encouraged to express yourself rather than follow trends - to break the mould and live dangerously.

I also have every intention of making your lovely jacket and the gloves, mittens, etc, etc out of your book. Thank you so much for producing such a wonderful piece of work - I was finding it quite stressful trying to match my colours properly and you have taught me to be much more relaxed about the whole thing.

I noticed on your blog that you own Romney Sheep. I live on the Romney Marshes in Kent, England, where those sheep originated from.

My email is registerlady@yahoo.co.uk

Vermont Grand View Farm said...

I have a large order of sock yarn arriving next week that is just waiting for some dazzling color! I love looking at nature for my color combination!

Vermont Grand View Farm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
betsy said...

I used to live in your area, 30 years ago!!. It is gorgeous!! WE lived on the corner of Bear Swamp and Bug Hill Rds in Ashfield, even got married in a lovely L shapped hill top field there, in October when the trees were resplendent and the view stretched all the way to Mt Greylock. I liked hand dying then, and liked to use natural dyes. I made one knee high argyle sock from yarn dyed with walnut shells and onion skins. White, brown and yellow. But I never made the other, as it was too big and itchy. 20 years later I found a use for it, it is now a Christmas stocking!!

Ellen said...

I've done a whole lotta dyeing - can't get enough of it! I'd love the chance to win Gail's book.

Colors are like hockey players - none of them would be any good without the support of the rest of the team. That said, I have a fondness for the player in the acid green jersey lately.

Your first paragraph in this post spoke directly to my heart. Thank you.

Ellen (gabes@worldpath.net)

Elizabeth said...

I am a member of a volunteer group Lewis County Clothing and Textile Advisors in Washington State that teaches fiber arts to kids and adults . We just finished our first series of knitting and crochet. I taught solo for the 1st time up in the mountains at a little quilt and yarn shop. We have 16% unemployment so like to teach reusing. The shop owner has lots of Lion fisherman wool just begging to be dyed but I am a beginner at dying. I have leaped into the unknown with very nice results with fabric last fall.
Elizabeth ( rosenberg@tds.net)

Jolene said...

The best dying experience was using Cushing's, a crock pot, and WAY too much yarn/roving/mittens. I crammed it all in, turned the pot on, stirred a bit and walked away. The result was not the nice solid Wild Grape color I was expecting but was instead several items of softly variegated shades of Wild Grape. The yarn knit up beautifully, the Felted Mittens were great and the roving...well, I haven't quite figured out what to do with that yet. I have some vintage mohair yarn in a rather hideous shade of Harvest Gold that is dying (hehe) to be knit up but must become another color first. Gail's book looks like just the thing.

Jolene (bookwomanjwATgmailDOTcom)

d said...

Right now, I think my favorite color is teal .... maybe peacock ... something blue, anyway (just finishing a red/pink/coral phase!). Haven't tried to dye anything on my own yet - that's on my "list" for this year. Thank you for this generous offer!

Christine said...

I absolutely LOVE hand dyeing. The suspense, the colors....the suspense in knitting it up and seeing what you've dyed, looks like (is that a sentence?).

My first intro was KoolAid dyeing, as that was instant gratification and I didn't need to sequester certain pans, etc. But then I did other dyeing of beige yarns that I had and didn't know what to make with them. I knit that up and love the colors and I just keep the swatch, so I can remember the color combos and in the future, repeat it.

The overdyeing of greys is exciting, too, as the bright dyes become more vintage-like and the colors are like the moors.

I would love this book, as I don't have any dyeing books...I just dove in and started experimenting with methods.

marshaknits said...

My favorite color is blue and has been for some time. My home is full of blue. The deep jewel tones of most colors appeal to me.

Kristin, I absolutely love your books and your creativity. Your use of color is awesome.

Nancy said...

A mom of a friend of yours shared your blog with me. I'm looking forward to getting caught up on your postings!

My favorite dying method involves canning jars and I love rich jewel tones.

Nancy
smiths@smithfamilyfarmvt.com

Julie said...

I haven't done any dyeing since the tie-dyeing craze of the '70's but I did recently purchase some dyes which are eyeballing me from the corner of the room. I just need a nudge! I love all earth tones, especially greens.
Thanks for the giveaway chance!

lawheezer said...

Well I accidently dyed the dog once while tie dying shirts. It's time to bump up my color experience!

Tracie said...

I am so excited -- if I don't win I will definitely buy this book. I have been yearning to try dyeing, but am cautious by nature. This sounds like just the thing to push me into it and what a wonderful new thing to try with Spring (and spring yarn stash cleaning) right around the corner!

Foster Sheep Farm said...

Kristin, so nice of you and Storey to be giving this book away.

I am planning a workshop on dyeing yarn for next month here at the farm. This book looks like it will be great to work from.

My favorite new colors of yarn are the olympic colors that I just finished last week. Some blue and some bright green. They are close to what the olympians wore on their bibs.

Color and new lambs are my personal favorite reasons to be a sheep farmer!!

Carole

fostersheepfarm@gmail.com

Lisa said...

Deep, dark, midnight blue, that's my favorite!

Lisa

triskank@cs.com

Gerri said...

My favorite color is fuchsia which will be a fun one when I get around to becoming a dyer.

Gerri
greenboatgb at netscape dot net

Janelle said...

I have only dyed with Kool-Aid and have been afraid to use the acid dyes, invest in dye-only vessels, etc. This book looks very helpful and inspirational. Gorgeous photos!

Jennifer King said...

This book looks wonderful! I haven't dyed anything yet but am looking forward to learning how. I'd love to dye yarns using plants from my garden, I love all the natural colors.
Jennifer
info@thesachemfarmhouse.com

Kristen said...

I've recently started hand dyeing roving and yarn myself and it's super fun! I've tried everything from koolaid to acid dyes to natural indigo and cochineal, flowers, nuts, bark. Crazy fun. Can't wait to get a look at this book, I'm sure there are loads of methods and techniquest that I haven't thought of yet. And with my first batch of home grown fiber ready for shearing next month, I need to bone up :)

Tapgurl said...

I have been knitting for 2 years now and have started checking out books from the library on dyeing, just out of curiosity to see if I could transform to yarn the colors I am constantly looking for on etsy or in my LYS.
In a month I plan to take my first dyeing class, to hopefully get over that fear of making a big mess. But I will definitly check this book out.

alexh said...

My favorite color would have to be blue. There are such a variety of blues, from light and playful sky blue to the darker midnight blue and everything in between. it's also the basis for two oter colors I really enjoy, green and purple.

Anonymous said...

Hand Dying Yarn and Fleece sounds like a must-have reference book. I've worked with dying cotton fabrics and would love to move on to yarn. I've left behind the blues of my past and would like to try doing something with more zip.
Ellie

Kathleen C. said...

If I don't win I will definitely be buying a copy of this book... it sounds wonderful!
I have a LOT of experience dyeing (I work as a costume designer), but it's been mostly fast and simple. And kind of sloppy. There's some color matching but no small batch playing with color such as these hand dyed yarns offer. And I would LOVE to know how to dye fleece since I'm a beginning spinner.
I can be emailed at coneryka at the address jmu, then a dot, then edu (I've heard spambots are getting cleverer at reading written eamails...).

Berry Gal said...

This looks great. i have died yarn in the microwave with kool aid but looking for better technique.

the yarn did smell yummy though!

Heston Folks said...

Color! Just what we all need at the end of winter, the more the better. Dye season isn't too far off, once the weather warms up. We like to pull out the pots and use natural dyes, or clear the table and paint the Jacquard on the yarn. Loads of fun. Favorite color? I love them all.

Barb G
barb@hestons.com

Carolyn said...

Gail's book looks like wonderful inspiration and information. I have wanted to learn to dye for some time now. I have knit several pairs of socks with Kangaroo Dyer sock yarn that I bought on jaunts to your lovely valley. I love wearing the results so it would be great to learn from her wealth of experience. They were both variations on green since green is my favorite color by far.

Carolyn

Julie said...

I used to like only natural colors but I am just learning to spin and love all bright colors, pink my favoirte mixed with green. This looks like a great book to add to my library.

Sarah said...

Oh, wow, I want this book! I have never tried dyeing, beyond easter eggs. It always looks so complicated, and I'm very strapped for space!
I've never really had a favorite color, but lately, I've found that I really like green. Not the standard crayon green, but grey-green, especially in heathers, and a deep, earthy forest green. I discovered this favoritism when I was searching for a good lace pattern on Ravelry, and all my favorites turned out to be green! So I went looking for a favorite pattern and found a favorite color. Wild.

Cozy Knitting said...

A very long time ago I was a new weaver/spinster, dyer. Because this was before internet ordering or information, I only used natural dyes. A friend (who lived in a rural part of the state) called me and said we were going to use tobacco. I could not imagine where she was going to get tobacco leaves, but I arrived with all my gear and wool. She had gone to her local general store and bought every can of snuff they had! I don't know what additives are put in snuff, but the smell was horrific. The whole house reeked. We opened windows, turned on the attic fan, and the vent on the stove. But it would not go away. The wool came out the most gorgeous brassy green color that could never be duplicated.

LadyKnits said...

Thank you for the recommendation. I have just learned to spin, and would like to take the next step into hand-dying. I once tried over-dying wool fabric for traditional rug hooking, sandwiching it with other colored wool and allowing the color to bleed. Fun blend of Science and Art! The chapter on Color Theory sounds intriguing. Nice to have help choosing colors which work well together. Sounds like she covers a wealth of topics!

NancyFancyPants said...

I took a stab at dying with the leftover Easter egg dyes. I decided to have my 4 year old granddaughter help me and convincing her not to just dump all the little bowls of dye on the yarn was quite a challenge! Anyway, we had ourselves a great time and it didn't turn out too badly, however the skein came apart and I had to spend days winding it into a ball because it got so knotted!

stringplay said...

I love almost all greens and if I could learn to dye subtly tonal deep greens I'd be in heaven. Have only tried Kool-Aid so far (so obviously no deep dark greens for me!). Thanks for the great review. I'll start looking for this book.
spoor AT bellsouth DOT net

Chris said...

Hi i have been thinking of trying dyeing as I can't always find the colour I want in the yarn weight I want.I have been doing more colourwork and there is always a need for more colour!I am silverfox on Ravelry. Thank you for your generosity to all of us knitsters.

Elysa said...

I've never dyed yarn, although I have a bunch that I need to, just haven't bit the bullet.

I have tie dyed though. What kid hasn't at camp. I always like working with shades of reds and pinks.

Elysa said...

I've never dyed yarn, although I have a bunch that I need to, just haven't bit the bullet.

I have tie dyed though. What kid hasn't at camp. I always like working with shades of reds and pinks.

Betty said...

I enjoy dyeing both yarn and roving by painting on the colors, wrapping the wool in plastic wrap, then heating in an old microwave, no longer used for food. 3 minutes on high, then three minutes rest. Do this a total of 3 times. Then let yarn cool to room temp before rinsing.

Anonymous said...

What a great give away! I would love to have this book!

I have only koolaid dyed some roving for needlefelting before. I would love to learn how to dye yarn (I don't spin yet).

I love all colors, not sure I have a favorite! I love bright saturated colors, but also love shaded and pastels...everything! I love color! And your books, too, Kristen! :-) My kinda girl! ;-)

Terri G
rtgerouxATcharterDOTnet

Anonymous said...

This sounds like just the book for me. All my dyeing experience has been in workshops or at friends - I can never quite make the leap to dyeing in my own home. I even have supplies, but something always stops me! So far my favorite colors to dye have been the red/pink family. I''ve used it to overdye brown quivet, and some putty colored silk (that was luscious). But my most successful were white skeins that I dunked into the blue pot at the end of a dye day and it soaked up all the dye. I later (years later) applied a darker blue onto the white and blotchy sections and now it's a lovely deep varigated blue.

kelley

thepaintedsheep said...

I can't wait see this book. I've known Gail for a while, since I took her "Felting Your Inner Goddess" class at Webs. I share her love of color and dyeing. I dye all the time, for my little business. I love playing with colors - seeing how colors play off each other and combine in fun ways, as well as how they look on different fibers, is endlessly exciting for me. I'm truly at my happiest when in my dye studio.

I wish I could make it to RJ Julia's tomorrow. Its one of my favorite bookstores. Unfortunately, life interferes with fun... Enjoy your visit to Madison!

Anonymous said...

Looks like a fun book. I would love to try out some of the dying techniques.

Karen
karen[dot]woodieATcmaa[dot]org

littlepeepsmom said...

I love dyeing reds even though for me they are unpredictable. Usually I get an orangey red or pinky red. Still trying, still dyeing though.

Kate (KnitsInClass) said...

I love dyeing yarns and fiber - I've been experimenting on my own for a little while, and sell some of my stuff on Etsy. I love to play with colors, and usually mix my own from the primaries.
I use a crockpot for dyeing, which I really like, but I have been interested in getting a good book of dyeing. I'd like to learn some new techniques - and am now very curious about "Mozzarella Dyeing"!
You can reach me as knitsinclass on Ravelry and Etsy, or e-mail to mccreight4 @ msn.com

Kathy said...

I love dyeing yarn and roving in a canning kettle outside. Sprinkling many colors and then adding a silk scarf or two or three on top. Such a delightful surprise when the lid comes off to see how all the colors made their connections with each other.

Kathy said...

What a fantastic book! My favorite dyeing experience was a summer day spend with knitting friends experimenting with jar dyeing. After we were done, we ate grilled chicken outside and them jumped into the pool! So fun!

Vicki Maguinness said...

My favorite color has to be green. I didn't know that until I started organizing my yarn and found so many greens, in soo.... many shades!
Last year I finished my first shawl and it needs to be dyed. I have been looking for instructions that a beginner could do. This book looks like an answer.

Vicki
2oodles@cox.net

710 East Myrtle Avenue said...

The book looks absolutely wonderful and I would love to have it! I've experimented coloring with blueberries and would love to learn more.

michael said...

I am somewhat timid about attempting to dye, so in the past I have gotten around this by just breeding my shetlands in as many colors as possible. I guess I could use the book! I enjoy the blog.

jenniferlindahl@msn.com said...

I have yet to dye my yarn. Last year was my first year saving wool- and since I do not spin yet a friend is spinning it for me (how lucky am I). I would love to dye the many, many balls of yarn that I have but I have no idea what I am doing!

Englenook said...

I have dyed cane for weaving baskets but have not attempted wool or other fibers. This book looks like one I would definitely want to add to my library.

Marie-Andrée said...

I wish to win this book! It seem great!