I’m on Etsy! And, on the road

Hi people!

I have spent the last two months bringing to fruition a goal and an idea: wool braids painted in the colors of the sky, an Etsy store, and an art show booth. And, after putting in 10-12 hour days nearly every day, I have got it done! 

I participated as a vendor at the Land to Hand Festival in Fort Garland, Colorado. What a great day! I got to meet some very lovely people, and I got to introduce my work to the world. Scary, but cool!

Connected to that, I opened an Etsy store, and I am now working on opening a store directly on my website. For now, please check out my stuff at:


Here’s a sneaky peaky:

Sky Braids: The Collection

Color mixing tools on the web

I am developing custom colorways for hand-dyed roving. I have been putting color on stuff for over ten years, but my dye work took a leap forward when I took Peggy Doney’s class on triad dyeing. (She’s teaching this year at the Estes Park Wool Market, by the way.) The system she teaches helps you to create a very handy chart for creating colors, and along the way, you get to learn how colors change when you mix them.

But sometimes, I just want to make a color without going through all the steps. And sometimes, getting to the right color isn’t always intuitive. I was having trouble pinning down a particular color I wanted, so I turned to Professor Google for help. I found a couple of websites I want to turn you on to; they were just the ticket for what I needed.

The first is trycolors.com. There is lots you can do on this site, but my goal is to get a recipe for a color I want to make. The tool is designed to help colorists in many different media, so you have to pick out the information that’s useful to you. For my purposes, I’m looking for CMYK information.

A note, which you may already be thinking: colors on your computer monitor won’t be the same as what the printer displays, or what the art medium produces. Yes, you’re right. So, it’s important to manage expectations with online color mixing tools. The idea is to get close, then refine the mix in your medium.

trycolors_1So, I start on the All Colors page, and use the color wheel and the shade picker to find the color I’m looking for. Click the Get Formula button, and that takes us to a description of the color.

trycolors_2Scrolling down towards the bottom is a conversion table, and there I find the CMYK info I want.

trycolors_3For my purposes, CMYK info tells me the percentage of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and blacK that I need to make that color. The light orange color in the example does have some black in it; enough to tone down the other colors in the mix. Then, in dye, the ratio of dye to fiber is what lightens or intensifies the color.

colorizer_1Another tool I found useful is at colorizer.org. Here, I can use the slider bars to make a color, or I can enter the info from trycolors into the the CMYK area.

The really cool thing about this site, though, is the color themes area further down the page. This shows complementary, triad, square, analogic, and other color schemes using the color you’re working with. This will be a great help to learn what colors will look good with a color you like. There’s also some very interesting information about different color models and how they work.colorizer_2

I’m hoping to have my first set of colorways developed very soon, and I think these sites will be a big help.

One batt spun two ways

Here’s a batt I made to make some corespun yarn. 

I was hoping to spin this on my new Spinolution Worker Bee wheel, but the wheel as it was did not like corespinning. (I learned later that its brake block needed to be relined.)

So, I spun this on my Lady Bug with the bulky flyer installed.

The fiber is mostly merino, with some angelina, some white Columbia, and some Teeswater locks. The core is mohair. Here’s a short video:

Once the spinning is done, I like to let the yarn rest on the bobbin overnight. Then, it gets a hot-water soak with half a capful of Eucalan. After I squeeze the water out from the soak, I roll the yarn up in a towel to squeeze more water out, and then it gets a good thwacking on the table. Here’s a pic:


The entire batt would not have fit well on the bobbin, and I wanted to see how the batt would spin up as a worsted-weight 3-ply anyway.

So, the 3-ply was made with the batt being one ply, short sections of all the colors being the second ply, and just the pinks and purples with some white as the the third ply. I didn’t include any more of the Teeswater, because I felt like it would be very coarse-feeling in this preparation.

Here is a pic of the finished skeins together: