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A good day to dye

by Nanc filed under knitting on April 27, 2006 06:45 PM

It was one of those mixed up days, where the sun didn't know what was going on. It was sunny enough to make you squint, but not enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk. I wanted an omelet, but it just wasn't in the cards.

The cards and the omelet had to wait, since the dame and I were on a mission. It was the kind of job that I would still be telling yarns about years later.

She called me up and let me know that the goods were at her place. She had the goods, but the goods weren't good enough, eh. So it was our plan to make those goods better. At least, that's how it started off.

On my way over, I thought about the situation. We were going to make that yarn pay by making it swim with the fat man - The Kool-Aid Man.

There were some roadblocks in our way. First, baby-face, a.k.a. Anthony "the Squid". His modus operandi was usually involved a fair amount of squealing. I didn't know why they called him "The Squid" and I didn't want to find out.

I brought my tools with me. I always bring my own tools. It's not that I don't trust the dame, I just don't trust nobody, see? Plus, all the bums down at the dock call her the Purling Pirate. You don't get a nickname like that without hauling a keel or two.

It started out well enough, but I could definitely tell that the dye was cast. Nothing made me suspicious of the goods; the fat man's packets weren't tampered with and the yarn... well, the yarn seemed to be a fine gauge. But that first skein was a wooly sap and wanted to tangle with me and the dame.

Hank didn't want to go quietly. He tussled and caused a ruckus. I knocked him around the chairs a couple of times.

Hank still wouldn't see it our way and nearly got felted, so we left him tied up and focused on the other three ball heads. They saw what happened to Hank and played nice.

The dame and I swiftly had those other skeins tied up, we let them stew in their juices for a while.

While they soaked, we took to the drink. The artificially-flavored, powdered drink concentrate, that is. It seems that those Hanks got mixed up in some of the Kool-Aid Man's business. And everyone knows that if you mess with the Big Man, that there's a stain that don't come out.

Kool-Aid put the hurt -and the heat on the skeins. I tell you, they were simmering. The Kool-Aid Man kept his cool and never let things come to a boil.

He's not all sweet like a lot of folks think he is. When he doesn't have the sugar lady on his arm, he's a different man. He was mixed up with a bit of vinegar and wanted to show those skeins his true colors.

The Big Guy kept the heat on until they were exhausted, and then they saw things his way. He let 'em cool off, put 'em in the soak once more, and then hung 'em out to dry. He had gotten all he wanted from these guys, and they had the marks to prove it.

Once the Kool-Aid Man was done with the first three, he came back to the one that fought back. It was an ugly battle. Even Anthony "The Squid" had to have a lay-down. This Hank wasn't giving an inch.

Finally, we were able to bind him good an' tight, and Hank had all the fight taken out of him. We couldn't let him pull the wool over our eyes. The Kool-Aid Man gave 'em a cherry bath, and Hank came out smellin' like... well, cherries.

In the end, Hank and the other skeins were reformed, and not even their mother would recognize 'em now. Now if only there was a decent omelet joint open at this time of night...

Me and the dame came out of it fine. Sure, no amount of scrubbing could take the Soarin' Strawberry Lemonade stain off the tips of our fingers, but we'd survive.

So here's our red, hot tips for you home dyers out there:

  • Skip the tussle and unwind the hank from a swift.
  • Keep the ties loose when tying off sections of the skein. Too tight and the dye won't penetrate.
  • Red dyes take longer to exhaust than other colors in our experience. Spent dyes will either be clear or cloudy - which makes more sense when you see it.
  • Wind the dry skein back onto the swift or a niddy-noddy.

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read comments

Hi, this blog has been upgraded, but I'm leaving the old pages online until the search engines catch up. If you want to join the discussion, this may be the page you're looking for on the new site.

Posted by: P-la on April 27, 2006 06:44 PM

There you go, being all NanC clever again!
It was fine day Matey and I look forward to tangling the high Cs with you again soon!

Posted by: Petra on April 27, 2006 07:26 PM

Ohmygosh... that poor Hank! I know he was bad an all, but now his poor parts are all green and red and pink and yellow! Damn... you girls are vicious!

Posted by: Jen da Purse-Ho on April 27, 2006 08:20 PM

ooh yours came out purty. I did the microwave method and i'm happy w/ my attempt to overdye my originally failed dying attempt. :) i tried again today....pics will be posted later. i should be more patient in dying...but i get so excited. lol

Posted by: Bot Gurl on May 1, 2006 04:35 AM

Your hand-dyed came out great! I love the colors and your narration. So creative as usual.

Posted by: aubyn on May 2, 2006 01:18 PM

i think bogey should star in the movie version of this caper-very well done nanc

Posted by: Erica on May 14, 2006 01:42 AM

HA! I'm glad that you guys showed that bad Hank who was in charge!

Posted by: Lauren on May 14, 2006 02:27 AM

Beautiful yarn! After seeing your handiwork at SnB it inspired me to give the koolaid another go. I made my Mother's Day gift out of it.

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