A Dye Day

Well, you know how it is.  You start a project with oddballs and run out of them before the project is done, so you end up buying more yarn to finish the project, usually ending up with more oddballs!  It’s a very vicious cycle, unless you are at the absolute pinnacle of yarn calculations (which, of course, I am not).  This happened to me once before in a big way – I bought some turquoise Mongolian Cashmere (Jade Sapphire brand).  Used it for the top of my prototype knit of “Devon’s Empire Tunic.”  Had a lot left over, so I knit a hat, which I thought would take care of it.  Nope.  Still had a lot left over.  Did a multistranded lace shawl with this as one of the strands, and…that’s when I ran out, about 2/3 of the way through the shawl.  I dithered for a while and then bought some more, finished the shawl, and…had a lot left over.  It sat around for a long time and then I incorporated it into another new shawl design (Vacation) and I’m so tired of looking at it that I’ve listed it in the store.

But you know that I never learn my lesson.  Once the Vacation project was done I had a ton of odds and ends of blue & turquoise-toned laceweight cashmeres.  So I decided to really splurge.  I combined one strand of each color (four strands total) and began to knit an oversized, cushy pullover.  Started with the sleeves.  The sleeves are done, and they’re fine.  The picture is a little washed out.

The first sleeve. The cuff is beaded and missing the strand of bright blue.

Progressed to the body.  Now, I knew I’d run out of my dark turquoise, so I put that at the hem, planning to strand in light turquoise when I ran out.  Fine, that’s fine, it’s all fine, yep, except…I also ran out of bright blue.

So.  Do I Macgyver the project with other blue & turquoise yarns I have around, or do I get more that will match?  Well, yeah.  I threw in a strand of deep blue qiviut from the store stock, which was too dark, and a strand of the correct color turquoise that was 100% silk.  Which was too shiny and didn’t make me happy at all.  I ripped back the silk, ordered the exact color match (in cashmere) from the store where I’d bought the first skein, and then went upstairs and dyed a skein in the correct bright blue.

Net time wasted:  about an hour to knit the few rows with the “wrong yarns,” decide it was no good, and tink back.  I don’t count the dye time as wasted since I got a perfectly usable skein out of it.  This is just a warning to you (and myself) that things always go better if they are done right the first time!

I also dyed some Christmas-green cashmere with turquoise, so now I have a nice deep teal, and two skeins of undyed silk.  One went in the bright blue dye bath and came out lavender, and the other is variegated, half turquoise, half chartreuse.  Man, I can’t wait to knit with that one!

Pics when dry.  Thanks for listening!

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