KnitPicks, Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Wool, Yarn

Taking Advantage of the Summer Like Weather

Hey Everyone!

Yesterday and today have been way to hot, yesterday got up to 90 and today got up to 91.

Yesterday I really didn’t feel like washing socks, but today I made it happen and then put them out on the line to dry.

It still amazes me, even after all the pairs of socks I have knit up using KnitPicks Palette Yarn, as to how much excess dye remains in the socks once they have been dyed. It might also have to do with the processing, and the chemicals used to spin the wool.

I know when I work with it, it is so rough and stiff, and once I wash the socks I have knit up, that stiffness from the waxes and whatever else they treat it with is gone, so it softens up and is no longer so stiff. With those waxes and chemicals that come out, as does the excess dye that is left behind in the wool after the dying process.

I really learned about excess dyes, waxes and other chemicals put into natural fibers in the processing, dying and spinning process while I was working at the studio. When I had only been working with Acrylic and Fishermen’s Wool, I never really realized or thought about the fact that yarns were processed with waxes and such to make them easier to work with. It wasn’t until I was working with Cashmere and my hands would be sticky in under 15 minutes from the amount of waxes and such in some of the yarns that it dawned on me. Now that I am working with more natural fibers for my own projects its not so much that my hands are getting sticky, its more a before and after being washed effect and seeing what comes out of the yarns when I am washing them. The stroll yarn doesn’t seem to have as much excess dye left behind, as compared to the Palette.

I had washed the cobblestone heather pair of stroll socks I had knit up as well as the pair of ash palette socks. While the cobblestone heather socks are darker, the ash socks had so much excess dye come out, and it was this weird blueish grey color. It was weird.

I do like using the warm weather to my advantage when I have socks that need to be washed. I never tumble dry wool, I always block it, and let it air dry. I like washing on the warm days, because the items that I washed dry a lot quicker, and I don’t have to bring them in at the end of the day still damp and try to figure out where to put them up so they can continue drying. I like bringing them in at the end of the day, or a few hours later if I wash them in the morning and it’s particularly warm / hot that day, they dry super quick.

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