Back in August I was telling you about the Coffee Cup Contest for artisans at the Toronto One of a Kind Christmas Show.
I still haven’t finalized any plans, but I’ve started putting together some possibilities.
Starting with – my Hazelnut Vanilla Coffee Yarn.
I dyed two large skeins (500 yds each) of my 75% wool 25% nylon fingering weight yarn.
I made two pots of coffee, using freshly ground Hazelnut Vanilla flavoured coffee beans. I used 12 heaping tablespoons of coffee for each pot. I put the hot coffee into my dye pot, added ‘some’ water, a tablespoon of citric acid (for mordant) and a tablespoon of glauber salt to level the colouration.
I brought the pot to a bare boil and let it simmer for about an hour and a half.
My ‘dye’ didn’t exhaust but I got a good catch on the yarn. My rinse water showed some colour in it but the yarn didn’t appear to fade. I may rinse it an extra time before knitting with it just to be sure the colour is actually fixed.
What’s especially cool about this yarn is that is SMELLS like a great cup of coffee (which is why I used citric acid as my mordant, and not vinegar!).
Click to Smell
My current thinking is to make a pair of Thigh Highs. But I’ll need something else. According to the competition rules there must be a coffee cup in the work, so just smelling like coffee isn’t enough.
I guess I could hunt up some fair isle or intarsia pattern ideas for adding a coffee cup motif.
I scrounged up these yarns that I could use with the Hazelnut Vanilla:
On the left of the Coffee skein – Pure Milk Fiber from Viking of Norway, in pale blue (#920), buttery yellow (#940), and mixed blue and yellow (#969). 100% Milk, 165m/50g. Cool water wash. No dryer.
On the right of the Coffee skein: Araucania‘s Ruca yarn - in Solid #103 (mauve) and Multi #13. 100% Sugar Cane. Hand dyed in Chile. 241m/100g. Handwash in cool water. No dryer. Dry cleaning recommended.
I dunno – maybe with the mauve is too many colours.
Maybe this is a little more coherent? BTW, the blue milk fiber is almost dead on the same blue as in the Sugar multi.
The Milk and Sugar fibers are both very unstretchy – like a pure cotton, but great feel and look – with a sheen like a good silk. The yarn also is a little heavier (I didn’t do the math, but just going on looks) than my sock yarn. Upshot – I don’t think I can do a fair isle or intarsia with these yarns on my sock knitter – I think whatever I do I will have to duplicate stitch on the socks after the fact.
So now I’m on the hunt for simple motif patterns of some kind of coffee cup(s) or mug(s) that I could work on. And maybe some other simple decorative stitching to add.