Our speaker, Raya Budrevich, began her business Blissful Knits by dyeing yarn in her kitchen. As she explained, she has now graduated to a better set-up in her garage, taking over her husband’s former beer brewing sink to rinse the beautiful colors she hand dyes there.
She brought a large selection of skeins and arranged them in bowls like candy, as she described how she decided to become a hand dyer and how the business is growing. Raya also showed samples of lovely shawls she has designed that work well with these speckled and variegated yarns. Often, she sets them off with plainer grey or other solid-color yarns.
Knitter’s Bingo?? Yup – it was lots of fun! It took some sleuthing to find other members to meet the requirements on the card. Who’s been on a knitting cruise? Won a ribbon for her knitting? Pet a sheep? Now we know! It was fun to exchange info with other members and find out a little bit about them and their knitting interests.
All this bingo sleuthing took place as we were also perusing and bidding silent-auction-style on piles of yarns, books, and tools. Members left the meeting with lots of beautiful new yarn and ideas for projects. Hopefully we’ll be seeing some of those finished items at future meetings. Here are a few things that went home in our carpool.
We had an interesting and informative presentation on using hand dyed yarns by Stacey Serafin at our March meeting. As all dyers do, she makes many decisions during the dyeing process and she shared with us how those decisions can affect the finished item made with a particular yarn.
Pooling can be a nemesis in many projects. Many of us have been mystified as to why some yarns tend to pool and others don’t. Stacey showed us some tips on how to look at a skein of yarn to gauge how likely it is to pool. She suggested (this is not always appropriate to do so ask before you do it!) unfolding the skein into a big loop and studying the way the dye was applied. Look for the relative lengths of the color sections and the abruptness of the color changes. If the sections are of very even length with abrupt changes there is a greater chance of pooling. This cannot be seen when the skein is folded up. These aren’t hard and fast rules because it always depends on the pattern you’ll be using, but they are worth paying attention to when you look at yarn.
Our theme of the year for 2017 is color – in any form. There does have to be more than one in the project but it doesn’t have to be fancy – basic stripes are fine. For those who want to be a bit more adventurous there are lots of techniques to try. Think stranded colorwork, intarsia, and mosaic. Using multiple colors in helix knitting (go look it up – it’s cool!), twined knitting, shadow knitting, double knitting, modular knitting, or entrelac can be a fun challenge with beautiful results. If you are interested in a mini workshop on any of these topics let a board member know.
Color was also the topic of our February meeting presentation. Nance came to talk to us about using different types of multi-colored yarns. She showed an amazing range of gorgeous colorwork making use of long color repeats, short color repeats, variegated yarns, and gradient sets. Her samples and discussion were great inspiration to explore color in our knitting – especially appreciated in the grey of winter!