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Dirty dyeing…

Did I mention I love to dye wool, especially dirty old colours.  Did I mention why? Besides the fact that I love old aged colours?  Well this morning’s accident was proof that my colours need to be “dirty”.  As I was hooking away at a new rug (actually a pattern from Spruce Ridge Studio – Not Forgotten Farm) I accidentally dumped about 1/4 cup of my coffee onto my rug!  What could have been a disaster if  I worked in bright clean colours actually became serendipitous because my background is Dirty Maple Sugar!!!!  So a little extra “mochachino” did not damage my rug and result in reverse hooking!  Quite often I intentionally “dirty up” a colour so that it will work in my rugs.  And I love to use all the dyes – Prochem, Cushings and Magic Carpet.  I have a TON of dye books and a book where I record (if I remember) my own concoctions.  I like to dye values together in the pot by using different base values rather than varying the amount of formula.  I throw them all into the pot and if I specifically want a very light version I will pull that one out when it is the value I want and once the rest of the dye has been absorbed I then throw that piece back in to set the dye.  Recently I bought Susan Quicksall’s dye book Dyeing for Colour (Susan is an amazing designer and rughooker from Texas – Holly Hill Designs). Her colours are wonderfully aged.  Here is a colour called Verdigris Wash which I dyed yesterday – 2 yards of varied textures and solids.  You can see the lights, mediums and darks – this is my “primitive” way of getting these important values and contrasts.  Dead easy and fun!

Susan Quicksall’s Verdigris Wash

Antique Rabbit and Tulips – background is Verdigris Wash and rabbit is Dirty Maple Sugar – one of my kits in my online store.

Today my friend Sandi is visiting and bringing her rug which she started in the Jule Marie workshop.  The rug is based on her dog, Hallee, and although wide cut and primitive really does look like Hallee.   I will take a picture and post it tomorrow.

The picture I posted yesterday of Wendy’s Paisley rug incorporated lettering.  We discussed some of the alternative ways of doing lettering during our class with Jule Marie and also it was discussed during the class Elaine gave on Paisley at Trent.  The method I have always used is to hook in my letters, hook around them and then pull them out and hook them in again as they tend to get a bit scrunched when you hook around them.  In Elaine’s class Wendy learned another method – hook them in a cut 1 size larger and hook them into every hole and a bit higher and then when you hook around them they don’t get scrunched.  I am sure there are other ways but I thought I would share these with you in case you have not heard of these methods.


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