Like most of you, my eyes and mind are constantly in search of beautiful things.
A while back, I did a story about my obsession with Harris Tweed, but today, I want to tell you about my new obsession: Hand Dyed Yarn.
The word yarn comes from Middle English, from the Old English gearn, akin to Old High German 's garn, "yarn", Dutch 's "garen", Italian 's chordē, "string", and Sanskrit 's hira, "band".
The idea of dyeing yarn dates back to Neolithic times, over 5000 years ago on the continent of Asia. China has been using dyes sourced from plants, minerals, and insects for at least this far back in time.
My mother talked about dying muslin fabric with tea or plants when she was growing up and since much of what I write is historical, this fascinates me even more.
My friend Maureen, right here in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, showed me how she dyes her yarn, and it is as much an art as it is a craft.
The process begins by importing only the finest yarn from the UK- as her base. Perhaps this is why I love her yarn so much? It reminds me of my tweed.
Maureen carries many blends of yarn, including yarn with cotton or silk.
A skein, or hank or yarn, is a large length that has been loosely wound into a ring and then twisted into a figure of eight. These hanks are immersed in dye pans.
Maureen uses a combination of primary and custom blended dyes. Each batch created is unique and blueprints and recipes must be created so she can replicate the pattern and design for future orders.
After dying and rinsing, she dries the yarn in a huge oven.
You would think that was the end of the process, but then comes the time-consuming part of twisting, tying and labeling.
Besides being eye candy, her yarn is petal soft for wearability
If you love handmade beauty, check her out at her website Charmingewe.com.