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sun and rain

September 25, 2020

we’ve had rain, welcome, but rather a lot of it

followed by the sun – also welcome

more sunflowers from my neighbour

she planted many different kinds but couldn’t remember which were the black Hopi used for dyeing

I took a guess and added them to the first batch which had been sitting in the sun for 2 weeks

the smell was pungent!

the first weak vat was uninspiring

I added the extra seeds and simmered 1 hour

after removing a small sample, the first  skein went back into the “new” vat and again simmered 1 hour

which produced a nice olive green

I seem to be spending most of my time spinning – it is very comforting

the Romney fleece, washed and flick carded

singles spun on Turkish spindle and plied on the wheel

hopefully this will keep me busy for awhile

I’m enjoying spinning a very fine 2 ply silk, Merino and alpaca blend

and when the sun is shining pruning, weeding and winterizing the garden

the fig tree is getting a massive pruning- too much for my handsaw

the boys are coming with a chainsaw on the weekend

11 Comments leave one →
  1. Going Batty in Wales permalink
    September 26, 2020 4:18 am

    We had thunder, a deluge and hail yesterday but it is drier today. Real Autumn weather. Using natural dyes means your work tracks the seasons in the garden and in the vat. I have a fig tree which needs cutting back but yours must be enormous to require a chainsaw!


    • September 26, 2020 10:10 am

      Sue – I dye throughout the summer, would love to have an outdoor fire but would probably get arrested! Don’t want the moisture, condensation in the kitchen in the winter. The fig tree is enormous, it really “took off” in the last year.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Going Batty in Wales permalink
        September 28, 2020 2:55 am

        I presume you have some kind of rule about not having fires outdoors? I had already heard that in some places in the USA you are not allowed to dry washing outdoors. So much for the land of the free!


      • September 28, 2020 10:18 am

        Sue – I’m all for freedom, but common sense (which is sometimes in short supply) also comes into play. Open fires in an urban, neighbourhood setting are not always safe nor are they good for air quality or the environment. And in our fire prone forests it is vitally important. Yes, some high end, expensive real estate districts have laws against hanging out laundry – I expect when you live in or own property in such an area the people support such snobby thinking.


      • Going Batty in Wales permalink
        September 29, 2020 3:09 am

        I hadn’t realised you were in an area where there was a wildfire risk. That makes sense.


      • September 29, 2020 10:21 am

        Sue – I was brought up in northern first growth forests. My father was the fire chief so have a very health respect for fires.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Going Batty in Wales permalink
        September 30, 2020 2:16 am

        What an interesting life you have led! I do enjoy hearing about it and seeing the results in you.


      • September 30, 2020 8:56 am

        Sue – hoping there are more interesting times in the future.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Going Batty in Wales permalink
        October 1, 2020 2:35 am

        Oooooh Yes!


  2. September 25, 2020 10:27 pm

    That’s what I’d call a ‘golden olive’ rather than a ‘drab olive’. Pretty colour.


    • September 25, 2020 10:49 pm

      Kate – it is always interesting to get a green in natural dyes. I’ve saved some seeds to grow the sunflowers next year and experiment some more.

      Liked by 1 person

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