Dye Studio Day, Shetland Roving in the Pot

Sharing my little dye secrets as I go about applying color to some Shetland roving I grew and had produced at the Virginia Fiber Mill.
I start off by winding the roving around my forearm. I place the ring of roving in the pot (steel or enameled) so I can distribute the dye through out the roving.

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I add water until it just covers the roving. I don’t want it swimming around.

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Then I set the pot onto a portable burner and set the heat to 180°. I let it come up to temperature, takes about 20 minutes. This allows the fiber to become saturated too.

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Now to formulate the plan of action. I draw a circle and make a map of how I will pour the dye.

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The Landscapes dye I use is an acid dye that contains all the additives. So no mordant required. It is in powder form.
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I use old plastic tumblers to mix in.
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I add the appropriate amount of dye, and mix with hot tap water. Once the temperature of the heating fiber is at 180°, it is time to pour.

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I pour across the the rows of roving according to my map. I let the simmering continue for another 20-30 minutes. Then I let cool, usually over night.

Then when cool, I drain off the water which should be near clear. I rinse the roving in my work sink, being careful not to agitate.

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I hang to drain the water and let dry…And there you are.

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I bag up to sell in my etsy farm shop or at one of the fiber festivals I attend. It is fun to work with wool I grow in my own pasture. It is lovely stuff, great to spin, to felt with. The sale  of our hand dyed roving helps to support our farm and allows us to continue providing wonderful fiber for you.

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About woolfarmgal

In middle age, had the courage to follow my heart-raise sheep, goats and rabbits and build a business around fiber. In the process, discovered an outlet for creativity. I not only knit, I spin, dye yarn, roving and felt, I also now knitting Shetland Wool socks on my antique sock machine called 1910 Socks. I also design patterns for knitting. You can find my products on my Etsy shop, Sweet Tree Hill Farm. And I teach many of these skills. My bliss is working where I live, having sheep as co-workers and sharing all of this with other fiber enthusiasts.

Posted on August 15, 2013, in Fiber Fun! and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I love how you’ve dyed and worked the wool Kathy. I bet it’s going to be absolutely beautiful when its spun and knitted. (I really should learn how to knit one of these days.) 🙂

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