Saturday, October 28, 2006

Cable Cardigan Update

I finished the Norah Gaughan cabled cardigan body and decided to start on the long scarf piece. Because the Patons Classic Wool was a bit scratchy and I am wool sensitive, I decided to use Art Fibers Golden Siam (silk tussah) for the scarf. However, working cables in the Golden Siam, which is loosely spun thin and thick single-ply, turned out to be quite tricky. Worse yet, the hard work doesn't show against the variegated yarn.

So now, I am thinking of using Classic Wool for the whole thing. My skin is so sensitive, that the wool scratches my left index finger because I control tension by winding yarn around that finger. Yet, the wool seems to be less scratchy as I work with it. Maybe it is wishful thinking?

I couldn't make up my mind last night, so I decided to sleep on it and cast on for the first sleeve.

In other news, we have the perfect storm of Halloween, Iris' birthday and a satellite launch all in the same week. She had told me that she wanted to be a bathtub/shower combo and I had collected a white box, white fabric, a shower head, silver duct tape and bamboo stakes (for the shower curtain surround) to make the costume. Then she changed her mind (T-3 days!) and wanted to be the pink Princess Aurora.

I decided that strangling her would take up more time to explain to the authorities than making the d**n dress. She also quickly said that, it didn't have to be perfect, I could use whatever I had, even if it had other stuff besides straight pink, as long as it was predominantly pink. Then she gave a well-rehearsed pleading look.

In the spirit of making do with what I have instead of rushing out to buy stuff, I pulled out all my pink knits from the stash. The stuff I had is on the bottom. From left to right, 1 might work; 2 is a french terry and too heavy, though the color is great; 3 is too coral, and 4 is too neon.

I then remembered the white/blue print cotton/lycra that I bought when she was a baby. We had a dye session this morning. The top three fabrics were the cotton/lycra overdyed with varying amounts of Fuchsia Red. Can you see the beach theme print?

Iris asked to dye her art apron in a swirly pattern.

The plain white IKEA curtain in the bedroom was treated with 2 teaspoons of "Plum Blossom" dye. First, I took out the hem and sewed the curtain into a tube. Then, I ruched and twisted it over a bucket. I put the dissolved dye and half a gallon of soda ash and rock salt solution into a Sterilite 66 quart bin and rolled the bucket/drape around a bit. After a couple of hours in a sunny window, I washed it. The drape is in the dryer right now so I can't show it. Stay tuned. It looks great IMHO.

See the Dharma Trading Procion color card; isn't plum blossom lovely?

Stick a fork in it
The dress is done. Iris loves it so much, she is wearing it to bed tonight. The curtain is rehemmed and hung. It looks like ripples of water in a stream. It is only with great restraint that I do not repeat this shibori technique on every other large piece of fabric in this house.

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