Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Right. So I may have a little bit of an addiction to dishcloths and dyeing at the moment. Regarding the dishcloths, I'm not sure if the addiction is to dishcloths themselves or to mindless, quick projects requiring little skill or attention...which may be something I need as I prepare for the field start-up of 2 quite large projects...both of which I'm sort of seriously stressing about.

Regardless, I'm okay with these new addictions.

Both of these cloths were knit for friends...and neither have been received (and as is typical fashion for me, one actually hasn't even been mailed yet!) so I won't share who they are for yet. I'll update the Ravelry project pages later if anyone is interested.

First up...when I found the ballerina cloth a couple months ago, I ran into another design by the same person that I thought would be perfect for a friend...
Mary and her garden. And who wouldn't love a little matching fish scrubbie to accompany it?

For this next one, those of you who know me will wonder if I'm feeling alright. I mean, me knitting a cheerleader cloth with pompoms and high ponytails at that?! There was a reason. My friend is working on a doctorate and has had some major changes that she is struggling to deal with. So I needed to put together a 'ch
eer' package for her. Definition: a package of many individually wrapped gifts, some silly and cheap, some 'real', with instructions to open one gift each day she feels down/sad. Hoping that each will bring a smile to her face either with the silliness or with pleasure at the gift itself. Scrolling through cloth patterns, I ran into these cheerleader ones a couple months ago and just sort of laughed at them. But then it dawned on me...what better thing to put in a 'cheer' box than a cheerleader cloth? This should make her laugh on so many levels...that I actually knit it...that I actually knit it for her (she is as far away from cheerleader as I am)...the fact that it actually has pom-poms on it. I know it will bring a laugh and a smile so it was more than worth the time to knit.

Also included in that same package...this same friend just started to knit as a stress-reliever and so far has been doing scarves. So I decided to dye her up some worsted yarn in her favorite colors so she'd have enough knitting to get her through this final sem
ester of her first year. Cobalt and 'sunrise' were the requests. Below is what I came up with. Cobalt was straight-forward and though I had wanted something a bit darker, this is close to what I was hoping for. It is slightly variegated which would look great in a scarf pattern. The other isn't what I had in my head but I think it does look like a sunrise...again slightly variegated but this one has some mixed colors. So hopefully she'll like them. In fact, I'm thinking that together, they'd make a great striped-scarf!

Next up in the dyeing department, a few laceweight skeins. The light green was an attempt to reproduce what I had done before...the result ended up being pretty darn close. The blue skein is a shade I had in my head for a certain, special person...and I'm pleased that I was able to match the idea with the real thing. Both of these skeins will be going to live (and hopefully be used) with friends.

After I dyed up the blue skein though, I was sort of having trouble parting with it...so telling myself I just wanted to explore the repeatability of that colorway as well, I tried for another. This one for myself. And since I had one lone skein of laceweight left that probably would feel lonely and unwanted if left in the bare state, I worked on trying to get an orange that had been rolling around in my mind for a few weeks...for a specific project. It's not quite as dark as I wanted but the more I look at this skein, the more I love it. This one likely isn't repeatable...I kept adding and changing until I got the shade I wanted...and didn't write down what I was doing. But that's okay...sometimes it's fun to just play and be surprised by the unique results.

We are finally having some amazing weather here. So taking advantage of it and about to head out the door for a long, brain-clearing bike ride with friends...already the second ride of the week. I love spring.

_ _ _ _ _

Now playing: Chicken in a Biscuit by Black Happy



kate said...

I love your addictions - everything is fabulous! The cheerleader with the pom-poms made me giggle, so hopefully it'll do the same for your friend.

Your dyeing adventures are delicious!

cauchy09 said...

okay, those pompoms are adorable. and that's some amazing dyeing!!

kristieinbc said...

I am impressed with your dyeing skills! And I am sure your friend will laugh when she sees the cheerleader dishcloth. It is awesome!

Phoe said...

Oh, I love those laceweight skeins! And I actually really like the cheerleader washcloth. :)

Jacey said...

Ha! The cheerleader washcloth is pretty incredible. I love the little pompoms, and I'm a non-cheerleader like you. I'm sure that will brighten your friend's day! The dyeing is incredible, too. I especially love the last two you are keeping for yourself. Gorgeous colors!

Sorry I am so behind on emails to you! Hoping to catch up today!

Sue said...

Beautiful dyeing!

Kathy said...

I'm really enjoying seeing the yarns you are dying.

I actually think the cheerleader is hilarious. I wonder how the pompoms will fair?

Good on you for doing so much good for others. I hope it's helping as a destressor for you as you get ready for your field projects.

Last year was the year of the dishcloth for me. It satisified so many needs: mindless, useful (because I felt so busy i felt even my hobbies had to have a use and unfortunately, making me happy wasn't a good enough reason), quick, mindless (did I say that already... hehehe). It worked out well both for knitting and then ready-made Christmas gifts!

Mr. Puffy said...

Well if you are going to be addicted to something these are a wonderful choice ~ that little fish scrub is just too cute!!! Sorry you are feeling stress about the upcoming projects. I often find the anticipation is worse than the actual doing ;) Love love love your pretty yarn!

melissa said...

i fully support both your new addictions!! bring it on, i say!!
when i saw the cheerleader photo i did sort of wonder what was up... but i love your explanation. i don't see how the cloth could fail to bring a smile to your friend's face. especially knowing that you knit it!

and your dying?!?! good gravy woman - it's gorgeous!!

Bubblesknits said...

Your hand dyed yarns turned out beautifully. :) And you and I both know a certain girl-child that will be getting one of those cheerleader cloths sometime in the next year. Thanks again for showing me the patterns. :) Btw, I gave you an award on my blog yesterday.

Denise | Chez Danisse said...

You are such a generous and thoughtful friend.

Good to know you are enjoying this spring weather. The sun is shining here today and I'll soon be out in it.

Sarah said...

Lots of exciting things to catch up on here! Spinning! Elk! Love it and your addictions are rather wonderful too :)

Ann said...

These are 2 great addictions. I love knitting wash cloths too. Your dyeing is gorgeous & I love the cobalt.

Carrie#K said...

Those are my two favorite colors, orange and blue so I'm not a good judge! They're gorgeous.

I love the dishcloths and the cheerleader cloth is a perfect 'cheer' present. Sometimes you really need short quick projects and who couldn't use a dishcloth?

Spinning elk? Too. Cool.

Rue said...

Rachel, the dyed yarns are absolutely stunning! I can't get over how beautiful they are. Somehow I missed your initial post about jumping into dying and I just loved the shot of the different little jars of dyes. I have this image in my head of some secret alchemist's workbench where you sit and concoct all of these gorgeous colors. Can I come live there? It sounds amazing.