Month: June 2014

Dubh You Even Know?

I don’t take a lot of custom dyes or spinning projects because they sort of make me nervous. I’m always afraid that I’m going to make something that they don’t want.

But I will, however, continue with a project that I started as a gift for someone as a custom piece.

Another round of Dubh, this time over 3-ply Costwold. It’s about 1/3 of the yardage of first batch which shifted this one darker than the first. Oddly, it exhausted more than the first as well, which is not the direction that I would have thought this would have gone.

dubh2

Dubh

base wool: Cream Cotswold from Windsong Farm Originals

ply: n-ply

wpi: 11

yardage: 108

dye: food grade w/ citric acid

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flour me with love

Lose Your Way In the Darkness

In a perfect world there would be no pain.

And darkness would just be what you need to sleep comfortably at night.

Unfortunately, that’s not the reality of the world, and superstition, folk magic, folklore, and mythology are all too familiar with the functionality of darkness and confusion in both war and protection.

Chaos is an almost primal state. Out of chaos comes order, and into chaos the universe slides. While I won’t go into particulars into casting your enemies into chasing their own tails (or tales, as the case may be) one of things to remember is that chaos, and the dark-shambles that tend to follow it, have almost always been seen as a pivotal aspect of human experience.

In many pantheons, they’ve tried to make it prettier in the last few years (and in the case of a few blockbuster movies, made sure that it’s pretty) by casting the chaos as the trickster, or the mischief.

Loki as master of mischief, Coyote as the trickster, that’s all well and good, but there is a deeper chaos that predates it. Loki’s chaos is the chaos that blinds us and just, well, messes with our heads for the sake of it. But when a deity like Erebus enters the fray? The father of death, night, and sleep? That’s where things get really fun-because the Greeks seemed to be aware that order is about 30 seconds away from falling apart at all times.

Why would you work with chaos at all? Because for one, it’s a great weapon. Cast your enemies into the darkness and let them find their own way out. Blind them and they can’t find you. Stuff their ears and they can’t hear you. Confuse their feet and let them not find their way home.

And as always, Father of Chaos, if this needs to stand, let it. Better not to call someone up on the phone that you don’t actually want to talk to…

But the other side of the coin, because the thing that folk magic, especially Hoodoo and other forms of American Folk Magic, is really good at reminding us of is that there’s always two sides of the coin, is that the entire universe came into being out of chaos. Before there was nothing but chaos and confusion and then the gods smiled. Chaos is that place that ideas are born, strength is honed, and we find new paths we never would have traveled down because we’re happy and comfortable right where we are.

Sometimes we have to get ourselves lost so we can find where we’re supposed to be going.

Dye What You Can When You Can-Dyelot, Fiber Choice, and Acidity

dubhdubhbatch2

You know how store-bought yarn comes with a warning to make sure to purchase enough yarn at any given time to finish a project because of dye lot variations?

This holds even more true for hand dyeing, especially when you work with a method like solar or kettle dyeing.

It is exceptionally hard to maintain the same color across batches, especially if you have to vary fiber choice later on down the line. That can have a lot of fun; different protein fibers take up color in different ways-and even differing types of the same fiber such as different wool breeds will impact your color way. This can be a lot of fun and is actually part of the appeal of hand dyeing for me.

One of the greatest impacts on the dyeing process is the amount (and even type) of acid used. A ‘good’ dyer will make sure that every batch has the same amount of acid, of the same type, across the board. I’m a child of chaos so when I dye I rarely do that, though I do mark what I did in my dyeing notebook in case I have to try to mimic what I did before for a sale, trade, or supplement a custom job I gave as a gift.

When using a dyeing technique known for volatile results like solar dyeing or kettle dyeing, both of which being techniques that like to break colors, keep in mind you’re not going to get it to mimic perfectly every time. You can probably get the colors to break again but not in the same places to the same extent.

The bottom line: make sure you dye large enough amounts to fulfill your intended projects, or make sure you’re okay with two radically different lots in case it happens.

Both blues pictured are both Dubh batches; they differ slightly in acid strength and wool choice. The latter came out much darker and richer than the first, which came out a much brighter, stronger neon color, though the darker breaks are the shades in the second skein.

Bloggers-I have started a new group board on Pinterest. Open to all DIY, craft, food, or other creative blogs, I would love to have you join. Joining instructions are posted on the board-join here.

Please, stop by this week’s Inspired Weekends!

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Inspired Weekends #23

springweekends

Inspired Weekends #23

*Last week’s entries will be pinned this weekend. I haven’t forgotten!

This is the year that won’t slow down. I’m not complaining. A lot of it is fun (I’m currently writing a pop up solar dyeing course for camp next month). I just keep waiting for this mythical rainy day to sit down and do blog stuff that doesn’t seem to be coming.

 

Hey look, code! This -should- work for a button. Or your sidebar or link up page.

<a href=”https://redcrowgreencrow.wordpress.com/tag/inspired-weekends/”><img src=”https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-VDB8xuVF_GA/U3N58gdSzpI/AAAAAAAAF2w/LEoCo33LW7U/s144/springweekends.jpg&#8221; height=”200″ width=”200″ /></a>

All entries are pinned to the Inspired Weekends Pinterest board.

You are also invited to join my new blogger group board- Make Me, Bake Me, Craft Me, Inspire Me. Please make sure to read the joining instructions!

This is a free for all style link up-there are no rules! The only guideline is that each entry should be your own content-but feel free to link up round ups, link parties, giveaways, diy, recipes, tutorials, favorite entries from your archives, recipes, anything that you would like to share!

Click on the button that looks like a blue frog at the bottom of the page to view the collection.

Please link to entries, and not your blog main page.

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Memories of the Dead (La Memoria Del Muerto)

You could cut this film to the first five minutes prior to the opening credits and I would tell you that this is one of the most terrifying movies I’ve seen in years, if only because it captures one of my deepest fears.

I think that deep down inside everyone fears walking up and discovering their partner dead.

This is actually fairly intelligent horror, which is a nice departure from some of the movies that American houses put out. An Argentinian film, La Memoria centers around a group of friends being brought together in the country for the reading of Jorge’s last letters. What happens next is a slide through grieving, ghosts, and demons of a variety of natures. I’ve seen reviews that liken the set direction to Argento, and they do have that lush richness of a stage play but with a lot more moodiness and less harsh lighting.

Where I find the connections to Argento is in costuming and cosmetic choices. If you dislike the American trope of overly friendly and too clean, you’ll find this movie to be a welcome departure. This group of friends looks like people.

There’s a little bit of Hammer in this movie too, with the way that the cast is shot and some of the prop designs. There is one prop in particular that links back to the man who dies before the film even starts, that is very classic horror (or Night Gallery, even) in its design. I love it.

This movie is really creepy, is the thing. I do read too much folklore but there’s something very traditional death folkloric to the piece, with the set up of the beginning of the haunt and the framing. Those who are lost finding the lost, the dead finding their own, the animals, the creepy, creepy children. The rotting living.

There’s a definite vein of gallows and black humor running through the movie but you may have to dig for it. However, the movie’s effective even if you’re not picking up on all the references.

I’m not sure how I stand on the ending other than saying, well played, team, well played. I think I should take issue with the way the ending plays out (nothing like building on stereotypes) but I didn’t see it coming, it’s not overused, and it actually ties up one of the plot holes that I thought I saw coming.

I’m not sure if this movie’s available with a dub. Spanish with English subtitles.

Spring Through Your Stash Wrap Up 2014

max

How did you do this spring? Did you manage to get any of your stash worked down?

This year was both a huge success and a miserable failure at the same time.

I didn’t get any knitting done. I made two hats and started a 10 stitch blanket that’s languishing somewhere in the bowels of my apartment. One of the hats still needs to be seamed. I should do that before festival in a couple of weeks.

…But then I got Freya out, and that’s where the fun really began.

I started out with several pounds of wool, including a partial raw Babydoll fleece. I was on a fiber no buy for the duration of the event (the whole stash busting aspect). The Central New York Fiber Festival completely destroyed my no buy-but that was the only fiber I purchased. I have since bought some natural wool for a class I’m teaching at festival.

The partial project run down-

Frigga-grey Icelandic wool. At least 450 yards, cable plied

Storm King-Lincoln locks, chain plied

Candy-solar dyed Cotswold roving

Dubh, batch one-dyed Heinz 57 wool

Dubh, batch two-Cotswold that needs to be plied and dyed

Boo-green dyed Babydoll and natural brown Babydoll

Max-long term natural colored mixed fiber project, including spindling

Alexandria-solar dyed Heinz 57 wool roving, chain plied

I think I put out close to 2000 finished yardage. I’m not sure though, I don’t have a final tally since several of these projects are still on bobbins.

Inspired Weekends #22

springweekends

We’re both a little early and a little late aren’t we?

Life sort of got away from me there for awhile, but at least some of it was fun. And I’ve been doing lots of things. Saturday is the first day of summer, so we’ll see where the next season takes us.

Inspired Weekends #22

Hey look, code! This -should- work for a button. Or your sidebar or link up page.

<a href=”https://redcrowgreencrow.wordpress.com/tag/inspired-weekends/”><img src=”https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-VDB8xuVF_GA/U3N58gdSzpI/AAAAAAAAF2w/LEoCo33LW7U/s144/springweekends.jpg&#8221; height=”200″ width=”200″ /></a>

All entries are pinned to the Inspired Weekends Pinterest board.

You are also invited to join my new blogger group board- Make Me, Bake Me, Craft Me, Inspire Me. Please make sure to read the joining instructions!

This is a free for all style link up-there are no rules! The only guideline is that each entry should be your own content-but feel free to link up round ups, link parties, giveaways, diy, recipes, tutorials, favorite entries from your archives, recipes, anything that you would like to share!

Click on the button that looks like a blue frog at the bottom of the page to view the collection.

Please link to entries, and not your blog main page.

Click around the list and leave a few comments!

I’d love if you would follow Horrific Knits on Facebook, Twitter or by email!

(Signing up puts you on a list for an email notification of future rounds. Please respond if you would not like to receive notifications either now or in the future. Thanks so much!)