long day.. lucky Sam, lucky me
dyeing silk


Last spring I bought some silk yarn to dye.


I 've shown it before in my Midwest Moonlight scarf. It is beautiful stuff.  However, thanks to Sara, I now realize that it had not been properly processed when I purchased it.  Can you say *YUCK* ?  I can... YUCK!  Sara helped me with some new vocabulary words (no, not YUCK), sericin and soda ash.  I have been reprocessing this yarn.  What a job.  First, I simmered the khaki colored silk in an alkali bath for a couple hours. Then I poured off the sericin laden water.


That's the really yucky dark coffee colored wash water.  Smells like what it looks like.  Not coffee.  Then I rinsed.  Here's the kicker, after the brown left, the yarn started to bleed lots and lots of blue!  BLUE! 


I rinsed until the blue was gone.  It took many more very hot rinses.  The final rinse left me with a lovely silver grey yarn. 


Ready to dye. 

All this can only lead me to believe that the original manufacturer did not process this fiber correctly.  Obviously, I am not an expert, a beginner at best.  But seeing all of this is enough to make me wonder how often is it unsafe to wear commercially dyed fabrics.  I've long held the belief that you should NEVER wear anything until it's been washed.  At least get the formaldehyde out of it. Who'd want perc or whatever cleaning agents they use next to your skin.  Well, let me tell you, after this little pre-dye foray, I am wondering if any of it is what it seems.  At least I know the stuff I dye has cleared.  This commercial stuff was dyed on top of uncleared dye on top of uncleaned silk.  Can you say YUCK?

After all that, I needed a walk.  It was drizzly and cool and the light was perfect.  I visited my Rock.


Then it was time to dye some silk.  Coming up next...


Yuck is too polite, I think.

What the heck is seracin? I agree with Carole...Yuck is too polite.

Wow! Pictures do help. Odd, that blue, now that I see what you mean.

Rock is cracked: how many years until rock is two? (sounds like a haiku)

And I am wondering who the manufacturer of the silk yarn was. I just bought 2 skeins of silk yarn, debating whether or not to dye it - so your post will be timely for me. :-)

Hm..... Rock/Silk - do I see a similarity in colors?

And as a sidebar, having lived in the land of rocks and moved to another one, I laugh everytime the horse boy snorts in surprise at one - they aren't exactly fast-moving surprises, are they? :)

It's nice to have a place to go when things aren't quite right. I think you'll do some wonderful things with that yarn and can't wait to see it!

Was the silk sticky/tacky or was it overspun? I've bought silk on eBay before and I'm not sure if it's processed properly or not...

When I see rock I see a climb! He he. But it's your rock...

Very weird, the blue. So... it was unclean and had lots of seracin in it, and then was dyed with blue and then dyed to look khaki?? Do I have that straight?

Silk takes on color so beautifully - looking forward to seeing the end product.

That (now fixed) silk problem is just bizarre. So they had not processed the cocoons properly and they dyed and overdyed the yarn without doing it properly? Every time I've dyed stuff with much silk in it, the smell makes my husband nauseous. I can only guess it smells worse.
I love your rock. I want a rock too, or a place where I can walk and be - it is my place. Mine is likely to be by a pond or something reflective. No people, no hassles, just someplace to be.

Very interesting. Scouring for a re-dye, perhaps?
Thinking about your rock, do you know about dogtown? Chreck out my local photographer's work there:

What a strange development! From brown to blue to silver... I didn't think that was even possible.

Wonder what color you will dye it? Something neither brown nor blue, I bet...

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