Saturday, August 18

Multiple topics in one handy post

First: Happy Anniversary to me! I've been extra stressed lately and I forgot all about it. I don't feel too bad because so did my husband. It wasn't until I read Canadian Dorothy's blog that I realized what day it was. Turns out that she and I have the same wedding anniversary. So go over there and wish her and her husband many more years of happiness.

Second: Although I am really good with numbers in general, and dates in particular, for some reason, I can never remember my wedding date. I wrote three checks yesterday, all of them accidentally postdated, since my brain insists that we got married on the 18th. Oops.

Third: We went out for dinner, and while it was fine, it was less than perfect. We ended up taking Zach, so not necessarily a romantic getaway, but logistically it made the most sense. Time for romantic meals sans offspring are being planned. As we have rediscovered our inner carnivores after a long journey into vegetarianism, we were hoping to go to Jak's for bacon cheeseburgers. Alas, we got a late start and the dinner rush was underway, the wait was an hour. So we walked across the street to Ciao Bella. We'd had some really nice meals at the old Ciao Bella, but have only been to the new location once, and it wasn't memorable. Last night was memorable because of the awful service. Was it because we had our teen with us on a Friday night? Was it that they noticed we came from Jak's? Whatever reason, they treated us like dirt the whole evening. And my salmon was way overcooked (but the rest of the food was good). Not that they were too crowded or busy with much besides stopping to flirt with the two thirty-something blonds at the next table. I am usually a generous tipper. But last night, no way.

Fourth: I managed to get a lot of errands done yesterday and for the first time in weeks, felt that I had gotten several monkeys off my back. I almost have some monkeys off the needles too. This one just needs a wee bit of decreasing then some grafting. The second sock is at the heel turn.

Fifth: Anyone who's been reading my blog for a while knows that I have enjoyed dyeing yarn and that I am a bit of a math geek. I think that the geekiness is one of the aspects of dyeing I most enjoy. I like to take the time to make very long skeins, so the final result is a bit unusual in that it won't pool or stack in the same way as many hand-dyed yarns. That's not to say it won't pool. I have seen hand-painted yarn with that assurance, but I just don't see how anyone can make such a universal claim. My latest endeavor involves at PVC niddy-noddy that makes skeins more than five yards in circumference. Using a dye process with multiple mason jars simmering in a roasting pan, I can make skeins that won't repeat their color pattern for 190 inches of yarn. But there are still so many factors, the colors may still stack or pool. It all depends.

This swatch is done with Brown Sheep Wildfoot that I dyed using the above long skein method. It has 75 stitches, started on US1 needles, I switched halfway to US0s. The ribbing on US1s gave 5.25 rounds til the yarn color sequence repeated. The stockinette on US1s resulted in 5.5 rounds til the colors repeated. After changing to US0s (and going from about 9 stitches per inch to almost 9.5 stitches per inch) the colors repeated at 5.75 rounds.

What does this mean? Well the long skein and the fact that it took at least five rounds for the color sequence to repeat means that even hugely wide socks in a pattern that takes lots of yarn ought to be able to get a couple three rounds before the color sequence repeats. That should alleviate a lot of dramatically disturbing pooling issues. However, it won't remove them. If the color sequence repeats at exactly N or N+.5 rounds, one could easily get a stacking issue that looks especially nice or especially unbalanced. And having a the sequence repeat at other intervals might end up with nice spirals or weird streakiness. You just never know, do you?


Kathleen said...

Your dye job is just beautiful... and, much like HS geometry was my worst subject, math still doesn't become me. I would take my chances rather than figuring it all out. But, I must repeat, your dye job is beautiful!

Happy Anniversary!

kmkat said...

That dye job looks good. I think that in order to avoid all DDSPIs (Distressingly Disturbing Stacking and/or Pooling Incidents) you will need to wrap your yarn around something a bit larger than the ginormous PVC niddy-noddy. Something like, say, a mobile home...

Anonymous said...

I, too, enjoy the mathematical aspect of dyeing. To think, I took algebra 3X because I just couldn't pass it - now I am doing algebra to figure out dye powder to acid to water ratios.

Your swap package is going in the mail on Monday, so be on the lookout!

Your KVVS pal!

KarenJoSeattle said...

I'm a math/science geek, don't like pooling, stacking, or flashing in my yarn, and I take my first dyeing classes next weekend. Thanks for the ideas about the long niddy-noddy and the mason jars. I'll keep them in mind for my dyeing experiments.

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary! I have to work very hard not to forget mine. Usually Joe mentions it. I have a hard time remembering if it is June 6th or 8th - the wedding band doesn't fit so I can't consult it. They both say 6-8-91, so that is why I have to think twice if it is the 6th or the 8th. Military dates are read the other way day - month-year. So I can't remember which way we wrote it - but I know it is June not August, so then I can get to the fact that it was the 6th. Very much thinking for one little date.

I'm not particularly good at dates.

Hope you find a better restaurant and service for your romantic meal! T

Dorothy said...

I wish you two many years of fun and happiness to come! Happy very belated Anniversary.

I do like your dyeing method. For some yarns that tend to pool, lace patterns seem to help a little. I don't think yours will pool very much if at all though.