Natural Dyeing and a New Project

Naturally dyed in goldenrod and indigo.

A new project is in the works, Pure Wear Canada. This is an expansion of what started with my project Handmade in Canada. Pure Wear Canada is focusing on naturally dyed premium knits, but not contained to a Canadian theme.

Currently works are in progress and will be appearing in the online shop at www.purewearcanada.com over the next few weeks. This is an exciting direction that opens up more and more possibilities. Pop by the site, or check us out on Facebook and Instagram (@purewearcanada) if you have a spare minute.

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Tiny and Purple

blog baby hat_4356I thought it would be a nice change to blog about something “nice”.

Last week a mom at my children’s school had a baby girl. I was lucky enough to see the sweet little baby at the grand age of two days old and thought wouldn’t it be fun to crochet a baby hat. As the gift has been delivered I can now post the project.

I  had some purple commercial yarn left in the (shrinking) stash,  a hook handy, and quickly with a search of the internet I had a pattern. Things went swimmingly until I reached the end of the project according to the instructions, looked at the hat and it appeared that the depth from crown to brim was way too short.

My next step was to go through our daughters’ bedroom trying to find a newborn sized doll. I found one, tried on the hat, and it was at least two inches too short. I then decided to search online to get a range of newborn hat measurements, only to find the circumference was fine, the depth was way off. I crocheted a couple more inches and then it looked right. Strangely, as I was finishing the hat one of my daughter’s baby hats appeared (I am guessing it had been in the doll clothes bin), so I was also able to measure the hat against a hat that I knew fit; that gave me confidence that it was the right size.

I could not believe  how quickly this hat was completed. The bulk of it was done while waiting to shoot a session and then while downloading files. I am thinking of making a bigger version for my girls, maybe even a naturally dyed cotton version.

Crocheting was a nice break from knitting up prototypes.

Now it is back to prototypes and samples……eight more to go before Easter break when I hope to take them out to the coast to show.

blog baby hat detail_4349

Crocheting and knitting by Debra Hunter

www.debra-hunter.com

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Too too pink?

blog tutu1My youngest daughter has been wanting “a pouffy skirt like a ballerina” for quite a while. She doesn’t want it as a dress up costume, she wants it as a normal piece of clothing, a skirt to wear to school. Today was another catch up day of “to dos” (2 hours fixing my husband’s coat, the boys needed haircuts, etc.) so I figured I might as well spend the evening making the skirt. I was guessing a bit at her vision, but knowing that her plans as a future career is to become a “princess” (she is mentally making lists of countries that have royalty…seriously!), I knew understated was probably not what she was thinking.

blog tutu2So here we have the vision in pink. A quick iPhone picture in bad lighting, but it gives a sense of the amount of fluff and pinkness. We woke her up to show her the finished item and she loves it. She also picked out a pink top and pink tights to wear with it tomorrow. That is going to be a whole lot of pink! It should be quite the sight seeing her play dodge ball in gym class, and I’m not sure how she is going to wear her snow pants with the skirt. It is definitely a “go big or go home” clothing item. One thing is for sure, no one will be wearing the same outfit in school tomorrow.

More Knitting Finished

Winter weather definitely has it’s good points, one of them being time spent inside to finish knitting projects that have taken far too long to complete. Just before Christmas I finished this infinity scarf. I originally started it just to get an idea of how much yarn (4.6 oz.) it would take to make one so that I could dye the right amount to knit the “proper” scarf. Let’s just say knitting the sample scarf seemed to take a very long time.

blog knit infinity scarf lopi_0302

Infinity scarf hand knit out of lopi (on location at Castle Mountain, Banff, AB, Canada).

It is very cozy. This is shown wrapped twice, but I quickly discovered that on a -40C day it wraps around three times to really keep the chill out.

blog knit infinity scarf lopi_0306Gray tones are perfect for a piece that I am keeping, however I think the scarf would have been a lot more fun to knit if it had involved bright colors.

blog fingerless mitts_9315The other night I also finished a pair of fingerless mitts that have been in progress for months. This pair consists of wool dyed in marigold and madder.

blog fingerless mitts_9323I was so pleased to finish the mitts. Half way through I decided they were “mine” as I love the patterning. I had tucked them away in the knitting basket for a few months as they weren’t that portable to knit. I knit both mitts at the same time so that they match (plus it is boring to finish one and have to start all over!), so it was quite challenging to carry around eight balls of yarn to work on one set of mitts. I pulled the half finished mitts out last Saturday and took them to the knitting program at our library, and between the time at the library and an evening at home, the mitts were done. Rumor has it I need to make another more masculine set as my oldest son now wants a pair.

Knitting by Debra Hunter
Studio H
Red Deer, AB and Pender Island, BC (Canada)

www.thehuntergroup.ca

 

Rolled and Bundled Shirt

I have been thinking about eco-printing a shirt for some time. I like the concept of wearing naturally dyed clothing and I love the earthy look and colors. The one thing that was holding me back was how to deal with eco-printing  the two sides of pre-made clothing at the same time and still create a visually pleasing item. In the end I decided to stop thinking about it and just try it, after all how hard can it be?

laying out the leavesI laid out the shirt, wet it down, and sprinkled on the leaves. then it was time for bundling and steaming.

bundlesThis shirt sat bundled for longer than I usually do as life just simply got busy. I am pretty happy with the end results.

shirt front

shirt front

Okay, to be honest I am very happy with the results and for that reason I am keeping the shirt for myself. Olive green is one of my favorite colors and the shirt is so earthy that I just must keep it.

shirt back

shirt back

I think the leaf placement worked, and I like how the bundle marks ended up on the back.

details

details

The details printed beautifully, possibly because the item stayed bundled for so long.

I am still amazed at how well rose leaves print.

( Interested in other reads? I also blog at www.islandhomeblog.wordpress.com and at www.debrahunter.wordpress.com .  Work is also posted on my website at www.thehuntergroup.ca )

How I Spent My Weekend ….. (or tying, tying, tying)

august bracelets blogMore bracelets all naturally hand dyed and hand tied by “moi!”. Tying was very successful this weekend, I played with adding some very fine naturally dyed silk thread and different beads. The colors in this set are different variations of madder, cutch and turmeric. I have new threads mordanting as I write plus some new dye colors to come in the very near future. Building inventory has never been so much fun.

(Online store coming soon, but if you just have to have a bracelet, please use the contact info below!)

Studio H
(handcrafted & naturally dyed wearables and art)
email: studioh@shaw.ca
website: www.thehuntergroup.ca
blog: www.debrahunter.wordpress.com