03 May 2013

Blue Lemonade

take cover

buried alive

I knew I was taking a chance when I dropped my newly purchased delphinium, lavender, pincushion, salvia, day lilies and dahlias into our new front yard landscaping the week after Easter.

This isn't New Mexico. I live in the land of May 28. That's Dave's Garden's suggestion for safest planting time in my neck of the high-plains-meet-foothills-of-the-Rockies, a mere 10% chance of deep freeze after that date.

We've had late frosts nearly every year. I wanted my plants to be tough. I wanted them to be able to survive this treacherous environment. Neighbors ooooohed and awwwwwwed as they passed while I dug holes.

"Oh, that's going to be so beautiful!" they'd drool. "Are you going to come over and do my yard next?" they'd beg. "Didn't you know you're supposed to wait until after Mother's Day?" they'd query.

Okay, so I deserved the ten inches of lemons Mother Spring dumped on me, or more specifically, dumped on my tender green babies, um, I mean, plants.

I'm not going to let a little bit of snow ruin my mood! I can plant again. And again, if necessary.

I've been wanting to snow dye ever since I first read about the technique, perhaps last October or November. But we got no snow all winter. In March The Lizard and I began our xeriscaping project in our front yard. Then all of a sudden, it started to snow. And snow. And snow.

Kind of like when you wash the car to get rain...

I gambled on sizzling temps like we had last year. And I'm no gambler. I lost.

I really, truly didn't intentionally bring on this late winter, even though there are great benefits. We need the moisture. It kills the deer ticks. (And the newly planted tender shoots.)

Luckily, I planted seeds, too. Hopefully the thick quilted snow blankets kept the ground warm. Hopefully the xeriscaping is not a total loss. I'll let you know as soon as the snow melts.

While waiting, I scooped up some of that ten inches, and I dyed. I literally dyed!

Um, and it was a blast. I'll do it again if spring oversleeps the alarm once more...

hank the yarn

soak the yarn

bury the yarn

prepare for surgery

Sprinkle away!

wait for the snow to melt

Cotton Snow Cones!!!

bluer than delphiniums

The Next Day

Good Morning, Cobalt Blue!

wash, wash, wash

ferment the yarn

rewound

delicious color

one of a kind

Success!

my first yarn cake

26 comments :

  1. So pretty. That is such an excellent way of making a bad situation into something fun.

    I love the blue/green yarn, it reminds me of the ocean. So pretty.

    Hope you get lots of sun today to melt all that snow...

    Blessings always dear friend.

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    Replies
    1. We have sun now for FIVE WHOLE DAYS, Stitchy! I get to ride this weekend! With no ice on the road!

      Of course, riding more means I won't get to sink my hooks into that gorgeous yarn just yet. But maybe I can take a cake or two along with me on Ride the Rockies in June...

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  2. I heard of doing this with ice cubes filled with koolaid, so what dye did you use, fabric dye, available in craft stores? I have loads of white #10 tread. The only snow we have had lately is the kind that doesn't stick around. I thank God for all the moisture. After all we live in a dessert.

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    Replies
    1. I seem to remember you having quite a supply of white thread, Susan! ;) This snow is melting fast, too, and some of the plants actually seem to be enjoying the moisture! I can't believe all but one seem to be doing pretty well, considering all the weight they just had on top of them! Hopefully it felt like a warm, cuddly quilt... :)

      I'm using Dharma Fiber Reactive dyes. Initially I just had primary colors, and I mixed my own hues. But now I have several different shades of blue, and I have been so itching to try them out. Wisteria is my favorite so far.

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  3. Oh that is some gorgeous yarn! I heard about your recent snowfall. What way to start the month of May! So glad you're having a good time with it all. And I hope your seeds surprise you in the coming months. This post made me giggle. It also made me want to dye some of my own yarn. I've never really done that before...summer projects when it's too hot to go outside perhaps. Best of the weekend to you, Snowcatcher. Stay warm and take lots of photos. This one is worth remembering:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. M.J., I would highly recommend dying to ANYONE who needs a lift in spirit or just wants to smile. There's nothing like seeing the colors develop right before your eyes, and having control over how intense the colors are. I could do this full time. Thankfully, being employed allows me to do it once in a while. :)

      Have a wonderful weekend in your warm little desert, too!

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  4. I'd never heard of snow dyeing before. How fabulous and your colors are beautiful.
    Hope your weekend is warm and sunny.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ellen! The forecast does indeed call for warmer and sunnier for five whole days! I'm in paradise!

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  5. Yuck to the snow, that stuff has to just go. But nice how you coul turn it around and fun could be found.

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha, Pat! You just inspired my next dying adventures. Now I need some more snow...

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  6. You sure have dyed. Great colours and wonderful photos! Snow is a rarity here!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, Paul, I have dyed. Just like the old Bryan Adams song...

      Such a night I never had before
      I really dyed and went to heaven
      Fiber addiction there ain't no cure for

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  7. Hadn't heard of snow dying either but it certainly made the best out of a situation and the yarn coloring is amazing! Great job, as in all you do. Is there anything that you can't do ... lol. Always a job to visit. Have a lovely weekend, blessings.

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    Replies
    1. Plenty of stuff I can't do, Glor, and things I don't like to do, like cleaning toilets and mowing grass. Eeeeuuuuwwww! But this I would do again and again! Just hopefully not until October. (Although snow is better than forest fire smoke...)

      I hope you have a lovely weekend, too!

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  8. how cool is that. You used the snow to dye the yarn. And it looks gorgeous. :) Great that you could use the snow.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Monica! It was a blast. It will be something I think about now every time it snows.

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  9. Always positive :). Lovely yarn...

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Neferi! Now, if I can just figure out what to make with it...

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  10. Snow dyeing is new to me. The photo of the blue yarn with blue snow crystals is gorgeous.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Margaret! I love that gorgeous blue, too!

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  11. I've never heard of snow dying before. I like the results. Sorry about your plants though. I guess you win some, you lose some. :))

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, CameraGirl! It looks as if everything but one lavender might pull through. I'm pretty happy to see green instead of white when I look outside now!

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  12. Like everyone else, I hadn't heard of it either. But man what great results!

    I think you may be surprised at what comes up this spring. As long as your ground didn't freeze, I should think the seeds would be fine. And the moisture will certainly help!

    What a super-fun post.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sue! It was super, super fun! And you are right. I can't believe some of the little plants that were lying over on the ground when the snow melted have popped back up! And yes, seedlings EVERYWHERE!!! Tiny little shoots of green everywhere!

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  13. You got some amazing colors. And be nice to your green babies.

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    Replies
    1. Lost only one lavendar and all three dahlias, Stratoz, but all the rest of the green babies are showing the love!

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