Nefarious Yarn Club

Yup! All done! These socks are huge (around a 12 or 13 men’s). They seemed to take forever! I finished them on the way home from Orlando. These are made of the Regia Stretch. I didn’t love the yarn while I was working with it. I washed them (that took care of the ladders…yay!), and they got really soft! I like it better now that it is soft! DH loves the socks and plans to wear them to work on Monday. I am just glad to have them done!

I also have some new yarn. Just before I left on vacation, I got the June Nefarious Yarn Club selection. It is some of Carrie’s Bamboo Sock. It is really lovely and soft. I keep petting it. You can see it here.

Today, I got my June Wee Tiny Sock! It is so cute! Andi (the organizer of the monthly swap) was my spoiler! It is made of Tofutsies. I love the colors too!


LB has been asking for a new baby gnome. He pulled the “tail” of the other one and unknit a good portion of it. He has been telling me that he “misses” his baby gnome. He loves Gnomie, but he just isn’t the same bedtime companion. I had been toying with the idea of dyeing some yarn, so I decided to dye enough to make a “custom gnome” for the little guy. I had some Paton’s Classic Wool in Aran that would make a good base. We bought some Kool-Aid and some Wilton’s icing dyes on Saturday (I also went to Hanks and bought some natural Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn that I will dye when I get braver).

Step one was to measure out some of the yarn into a skein. I didn’t want to use the whole ball, and I needed it in a longer skein. I used two chair backs to hold the yarn (no way could LB sit still that long, although he did offer). I tied it off with some random white acrylic I had.

Then, I put the yarn in to soak. I got a dishpan for this purpose ($1 at Wal-Mart…see how the dye supplies add up). I put some lukewarm water and a small amount of vinegar in. I then put the yarn in. I pushed it down to get all the air bubbles out. I then let it soak for about an hour (that is how long it took to get the baby to bed…otherwise, I doubt I would have been this patient). Sorry the picture is sideways. I just can’t get Flickr to cooperate right now (it took me all night to upload the photos).

Then, Little Bug and I mixed up some dye. He decided he wanted green and blue yarn. I didn’t have blue Kool-Aid, so we used the Wilton’s. I used a plastic knife. I got a smear of each color and added them to some hot water. It was about 3/4 of a cup of water (not measured, just a guess). I stirred until they dissolved. They looked very bright. LB kept saying he didn’t want his gnome to be too bright. I told him that it wouldn’t be that bright in the yarn.

Then, I put the yarn in a very small crockpot (there wasn’t much yarn…it is the one I use for dips). I put in just enough water to cover the yarn (lukewarm again). I then added the dyes (blue on one half and green on the other). I put on the lid and plugged it in.

After it had cooked for a bit (maybe an hour and a half or so), I added a glug (about a 1/4 cup) of vinegar to the water. That caused the yarn to suck up the dye very, very quickly. The dye exhausted in about 10 minutes after that (the water was clear).

I then shut off the crock pot and let the yarn cool. That took quite a while. I put it into a colander that I got (another $1 purchase just for this). I had to buy a new colander because the ones I use for food are all older than I am (more than 3o years old). They are cracked. They work for food, but would have caught the yarn for sure! I then rinsed the yarn in some room temperature water. The water was clear (that means the dye had set…yay!).

I then hung the yarn up to dry in the bathroom overnight! It actually took much of the next day too. I couldn’t hang it outside because of the wind. It just didn’t dry very quickly.

Here is what it looked like when it was dry. You don’t see much of the blue. It is very subtle. It almost looks like a darker green. LB was super excited about this. He thinks the blue is our little secret (don’t you love how 3 year olds think?). I think that you don’t see the blue much because I added the vinegar first on the green side. Next time, I may put a bit in with the dyes themselves. I also think that the blue was not as concentrated to begin with (it looked very dark in the cup, but there wasn’t as much dye to the same amount of water). LB is happy with the color, so I am not fussed about it. I just know what to do next time if I want the blue to be a bit darker.

Here is the final product all rolled into a ball and ready to become a gnome! So pretty! I asked LB what we should call the color. He dubbed it “Gnome Green”. How appropriate!

I absolutely loved dyeing! It was sooo much fun! I immediately went to KnitPicks and ordered some more bare sock yarn (I feel more comfortable playing with it since it is cheap). When I have had a little more practice, that Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn is going to have it’s turn! Eventually, I may get some acid dyes (Hanks has a whole bunch..and are opening a dye bar!!). Right now, I don’t really want to have anything around that is toxic for the kiddos. Maybe when I figure out where to store all the stuff that I am going to have to accumulate now (that scrapbooking cabinet may need to cleaned out a bit)!

On other news, I also got the May installment of the Nefarious Yarn Club! It is Madame DeFarge (so appropriate, don’t you think?). It is really pretty. I am not sure what it will become (socks, but I don’t know what kind…maybe just plain stockinette socks…seems practical, Mdme. DeFarge would have liked that).

This is why you should never leave yarn unattended around a toddler. This yarn is part mohair (it is Schaefer Anne). That means that it is a mess that will never, never be untangled. It was wound in a small hank. I unwound it and had it laid out ready to go on the swift. I was winding tiny 10g balls for a scrap swap. I stepped out of the living room to get the swift (why didn’t I have it set up ahead of time? no reason, really). I returned to this. LB (now also known as Naughty Monkey) said, “Mommy, I fixed your knitting for you.” Yup, it is fixed! Every attempt to detangle, just made it worse. Everywhere that mohair touches mohair, it sticks. It is almost like the yarn is spit spliced in several (very long) sections. I can’t bear to throw it out though. I just put it in a plastic baggie in my yarn drawer. I can’t imagine having knit with this yarn and having to frog! That would be terrible!

Ok, now for the good monkey. I am knitting Monkey socks with the Nefarious Club April selection. The pattern is sooo addictive. It is easy, quick, and knits so interestingly. The yarn is a merino/silk blend that was kettle dyed. It is gorgeous! The yarn and the pattern perfectly complement each other. I am really enjoying the socks! DH’s giant socks are on hold for a week or so while I wait for more yarn to arrive. It is nice to have a break from them (especially with these socks). I am on the heel now. The yarn is so soft and the pattern is so interesting….back to knitting on them!

I got two more little balls of scrap yarn in the mail yesterday! I traded my leftovers of Lorna’s for them. These are from the stash of ncreely on Ravelry. On the left is some ONLine yarn (not sure about the colorway). On the right is some Lion Brand Magic Stripes. Of course, they became blocks almost immediately!

Blocks 1 and 3 are from the same ball. You can’t tell. They came out completely different! They are from the OnLine ball. Block 1 is almost all blue, white, and cream. There is just a tiny bit of orange at the top that shows that it is from the same ball. Block 3 is orange, blue, turquoise, and purple. After the purple, it would have switched back to the blue and white! It would make a strange sock with those color combos, but really cool blocks! I have about 2 yards of this yarn left (all the blue and white). I may use it as a partial block later in the blanket. Block 2 is from the Magic Stripes. There is enough for another block. I will use it later in the blanket because the block won’t look the same. The next stripe would have been blue. Both were pretty fun to knit up.

Tonight I am going to tackle the helix stripe mini-sock in Ravenclaw colors. I will post about how the experiment goes. If it looks really neat, I may do bigger socks for either me or DH the same way later. After I finish DH’s giant socks of doom, I am going to make myself some Monkeys out of the April Nefarious yarn.

I ordered my Mother’s Day gift yesterday too! It is the Sunshine Yarns Harry Potter Sock Club! DH asked me what I wanted to get for Mother’s Day. I told him I was thinking about it. He told me to go ahead and do it!

The mail lady is my new best friend!! She brought me so much great stuff today…surely she must love me! First up…two skeins of Regia Stretch. It is in blues, grey, and black. Perfect for my boys (or maybe DH…just need to try to figure out how many yards it will take to cover his big old feet). This yarn is soft and stretchy! I can’t wait to work with it.
Next up is some Plymouth Sockotta yarn. It is also in blues (I am the only female in my household…we have lots of blue). This will also become socks for the boys or DH. I got this yarn and the Regia from Ravelry member KnittyMcSnuggler!
Finally, the first installment for the Nefarious Yarn Club arrived! It is the Hannibal Lector colorway (can’t imagine the hits I will get from this one). It is inspired by his leather mask. It has some really cool red flecks (they look shockingly like blood in some places). The base yarn is a Merino/Silk blend. It is so soft. Little Bug immediately said, “Make me socks from this, Mama!” I had to tell him that this yarn wasn’t for him. It will either become socks for me or DH. Probably me. I am not sure he fully appreciates silk. It came with a neat little stitch marker (a Hannibal Lector stitch marker) and a Nefarious Yarn Club sticker. I can’t wait to begin working with this!

BTW-the photos are so true to the colors of the yarn. I can’t say enough good stuff about my new camera!! I can’t wait until Critter starts sleeping again so that I have a bit of energy to play with my camera. I fully planned to play with it this weekend, but I ended up napping with him (we are in “sleep when the baby sleeps because it isn’t often enough” mode right now). He is teething. Poor little critter!