Monday, January 28, 2008

In the Eye of the Storm

Doesn't that look like the aerial photos of a hurricane? What it really is is the about half of a bump of merino fleece that we have been using for felting class. I have heard the term "bump" being used to describe many different amounts of fleece. From our supplier, a bump is 10 kg. Or 22 pounds. That is a heck of a lot of fleece. Some of it is being used white, but the vast majority is being used dyed. And I have been responsible for doing the dyeing.

Of the many classes that are offered in the Fiber Arts studio, felting is one. The students who are enrolled in the studio are expected to take the felting class, and a dyeing class too, so they can learn about colour mixing and gain the ability to dye their own fleece and yarn. We have 5 students who are doing this (and two part time students) There are 14 students who are majoring in other studios that are taking the felting class alone. It is for these people that I have been dyeing.
The teacher asked me to do up pots of one colour, but in different shades and tones. So a pot of blues, one of greens, one yellows, and so on. This is about 7.5 pounds that I dyed last Thursday. I have about another 4 pounds to dye this week for the studio to fulfill it's commitment of fleece that is supplied to the students, and then I get to start dyeing for the store so that the students can go buy their own fleece when the studio runs out. If they continue using fleece at the rate that they are using it, I think that I will be dyeing this much every two weeks. But then again, I've noticed that people rarely use as much of a material if they have to pay for it themselves.

This has been a great exercise for me and I have been having fun playing with the different combinations that I can make with just one colour. I have come up with a couple of possible new colour ways, and I don't think that I am done with the experimentation that I have started with blending of fibers. I really like the way that the merino silk is plying up. Now, if I could just find some time to sit and finish plying it......

3 comments:

Dave Daniels said...

Wow, that's my kind of fun! I'll take TWO bumps to go, please.
nice colors on the dye job.

DaviMack said...

Wow, that's a lot of wool! And a great picture of the intermediate product!

Kansas A said...

Wow (gee you have that twice already on your comments!) it looks like a big pile of rainbows sitting on the tray!! Very nice :)