I, on the other hand, have been dyeing and spinning like a mad woman. I normally spend a lot of time making wool dryer balls--the bread and butter of our farmer's market business--but I'm getting a little bit burned out on making those ever popular wool orbs. So, I took a week off and got back to my true true true love of spinning, dyeing, and more spinning.
I received a shipment of new dyes and went a little color crazy. Perhaps I was inspired by the dyes names: cayenne, avocado, pistachio, espresso bean, chocolate brown, cherry red, and honey mustard. Yum! Here is what I accomplished last weekend...
Here is a shot of just the handspun.
This is millspun yarn that I purchased and then hand dyed.
Below, is a picture of more millspun yarn dyed using onion skins. I made two separate dye baths with yellow and red onion skins. I dyed half the skein in yellow and half the skein in red. I did not pre-mordant the yarn, but I did use something called an alkaline modifier. It is added at the end of the dyeing process. In this case, I used washing soda. Ironically, the washing soda made the color from the yellow onion skins browner and the color from the red onion skins yellower/brighter.
I am really happy with the dyeing results. For me, at least, natural dyes can be a little "iffiy"...there seems to be a lot of room for a human error when making the dye, preparing the fibers, etc.
Now I have a lot of new yarns for the market and Etsy. Additionally, our 2013 shearing just came back from the processor...over 30+ pounds of natural-colored wools. I see a lot of spinning in my future. A LOT!