I know, I know. A week late. You see, around here, I'm pantheist with a sort of lean toward Norse paganism and Taoism (they aren't as far apart philosophically as you'd think), and the husbeast is don't-give-a-shit-ist. So we're raising the Goob exposed to all religions and not intensively in any one. The way this applies to us celebrating Easter is, last week we were informed by the in-laws (who've been remarkably tolerant about the whole religion issue) that all religion aside, every kid NEEDS a basket of chocolate and toys in the spring and it MUST be done.
My only comment was something about how if I'd known it was required I'd have done it on the Spring Equinox like normal pagans.
So, today, when the Goob woke up from her nap, I ducked inside her room and said "I think the Easter Bunny has been here." She looked like this at the news:
The Easter bunny HAD been there, because there were tracks through the house (a husbeast family tradition):
One of the bunny hops landed on the cat.
Sorry for the blur; she was annoyed and moving.
Anyway, she followed the tracks through the house:
and got her basket full of candy and puzzles and a Domo (every kid needs a Domo), and was allowed to eat all the candy she wanted all afternoon (another husbeast family tradition), and is at the moment staggering as she races around the house hooting and hollering.
I dread bead-time, and am allowing the husbeast to deal with it, since the 'free candy' was his bright idea. All I will do is sing "Twinkle Twinkle" and run.
However, this afternoon, I found the husbeast taking a photo of this:
An earless chocolate bunny. I kind of laughed, and he informed me it was "blog-worthy". I don't know as he's ever deemed anything blog-worthy before, and it is funny, so there you go.
If Google botches this photo load I swear I'm gonna go kick the husbeast.
Yesterday I was a big vague on the dye process that produced the pound of Purple Trainwreck. I didn't want to bog us all down on details and more discuss the big picture. Inevitably, there were questions (that'll teach me about 'bog'). So here's the explanation.
My terminology was basically 'mordant yarn, fling dye, wash and rinse'. And that IS the basic dye process, in a nutshell.
The mordant I used was good old vinegar. Sometimes I use alum and cream of tartar. They're both reasonably safe. So is citric acid. If and when I ever get a dedicated dye studio (and am not dyeing things in my kitchen, surrounded by food and cooking utensils), I want to play around with iron, tin, and copper sulfides, which are used quite a lot in natural dyeing. (Natural dyeing, it's not the dyes that will kill you. It's the mordants.) Traditional turkey red is madder with an iron mordant, for instance.
The dye I used was Wilton's "Violet" food coloring. Which is in fact a combination of two dyes (food colorings), red 3 and blue 1. (For international terms, you gotta look 'em up. Sorry.) See, red 3 sticks to everything - even things you don't want it to, like THE WATER YOU MIX IT UP IN. Yes, really. So pretty much the instant you pour it on a mordanted protein fiber, it sticks. Bam. Right where it landed. Then the blue 1 sort of soaks in, oozes around, and takes more time 'taking up' into the fiber. You can see it best in these spots off the roving:
In old-fashioned dye lingo, the dye is 'broken', meaning it took up into the fibers in a strange and funky manner, due to how it was handled. Usually this indicates a huge mistake in the dye process, but with this stuff it takes nothing short of a miracle to get it to dye evenly; I've managed it in the past, but it has taken some really crazy handling. Instead, I've quit fighting it and break it on purpose, and call it "Purple Trainwreck". That's where the name comes from. It's broken. It's a trainwreck.
The old adage about ten pounds of potatoes in a five pound sack comes to mind when dyeing roving, especially this one. The bag this roving came in had the volume of perhaps three quarts (or three liters). Now, I've stuffed it into a big plastic storage tub with a ten gallon/forty liter capacity, and it just fit.
Gonna take forever to spin it. And I'm still not sure how I'm gonna dye The Bells Fiber.