12 Sep

Angora

I really wish that intending to blog actually resulted in a real blog post.

Kid Hollow Angora Goats

I spent last Saturday with these guys and I totally meant to share it. Aren’t they cute? They are baby angora goats and I love their curls!

Pretty much as soon as I arrived in Charlottesville I joined a knit night group because that’s an easy place to relax, meet people, and work on projects. Many of the members are also members of the C’ville Fiber Arts Guild and it didn’t take much arm twisting to get me to join their ranks. September’s activity was to go to Kid Hollow Farm and not only meet the cute baby goats, but to dye some angora yarn for ourselves.

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

The first step was to fondle all the yummy fibers in Pat’s little shop and then choose a color combo that we’d like to make (a few of us also purchased some yarn already dyed by Pat, ahem). Then we picked the raw yarn and wet it.

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

We were each given our own recipes for our color combos and cups of the necessary colors.

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

We poured and smooshed until we were happy. One recipe involved sprinkling the dry dye powder on the damp yarn, letting that spread a bit and then adding dissolved dye of the same color. It reminded me of the blotter paper and black marker experiments you do to see that blacks are made up of many different colored pigments. I’ve long known that colors separate and speckle when you don’t mix the dye powders well enough, but I never thought to work with that as a feature. The yarn turned out beautifully.

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

The dyes were heat set in the oven (the dye studio was of course completely separate from any food prep sinks or ovens).

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

Piping hot out of the oven, our yarns were then ready to be rinsed and spun out. Mine’s the one in the back.

Dyeing at Kid Hollow

I hung the yarn at home to finish drying and then wound it in a ball. At first I was worried that a few areas were too light compared to the rich browny, greeny, purple combo I was going for, but when the strands separated in the ball, it all looked sparkly and great. Now I just have to decide what to knit with it. I’m not ready to attempt socks, but maybe fingerless gloves.