Dying Yarn with Mrs. Crosby

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I can’t even tell you how excited I was to walk through the actual doors of Eat.Sleep.Knit. This is the first year that I’ve been participating in their Yarnathon, but I’m just constantly so impressed with the creativity and enthusiasm surrounding the game. I want to do it all! I want to win the game! I want… so much more yarn and knitting projects than I could ever possibly take on.

But, that’s not really a good reason to fly across the country to visit a yarn shop. You know what is a good excuse? An exclusive yarn dying class with a dyer I enjoy: Mrs. Crosby. As soon as this class was announced I was basically signed up to attend. It was also nice to finally determine when to visit Atlanta, as I knew I wanted to visit in the spring but couldn’t quite make a decision.

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The website does no justice for the amount of yarn that the store carries. This was like yarn mecca; miles and miles (or at least that’s how it felt in person) of beautifully hand-dyed and made with love yarns. Where to even begin?

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I met Erin, the owner, and some her staff to get a quick store overview and tour before class. I didn’t have a ton of time to explore before class but figured I would browse more afterwards. It turns out: class was so exciting that most of the other attendees and I were there ’til nearly shop closing time! So now I have to go back, just to spend more quality time with the yarns. Darn.

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For class, I chose three skeins of Carpet Bag (a wool/silk blend) to attempt to create yarns that could be used for a trendy fade project. There were several bases available for the attendees to choose from and a few even picked up some skeins to over-dye (the yarn had already been dyed but could be modified for a more personal touch).

First step: soak the yarn in water so it’ll absorb the dye.

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Amanda (the brain behind Mrs. Crosby) gave us a demo of creating a speckled skein, which means we were basically just throwing color at the yarn and letting it soak into the places where it wanted to go.

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At the beginning of class, I was patient and taking lots of photos to document the process but… then it all got super exciting with colors and microwave sharing and inspiration and adoring other class attendees’ creations and and and… I got distracted. But I do have some photos of my dye progress, at least.

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After a little while, Amanda started helping us mix colors to make tonal skeins (mostly a similar color throughout, but depending on how the yarn absorbs the dye there are lighter and darker bits of color).

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Finishing step: microwave the yarn to set the dye! The line for the two microwaves was no joke, either.

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Amanda helped us determine if our skein was “done.” After setting the dye and rinsing it, we unfurled the whole thing to get an idea of what it might finally look like.

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Wearing our skeins like a sash became a fairly easy way to keep them out of the way but not forget where we put them.

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Amanda’s test skein for color experiments… That could be an interesting project.

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And my final results! I would’ve liked a little more variation between the two mostly blue skeins, but I’m happy overall.

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And of course I had to take a selfie with Amanda! What kind of groupie would I be if I didn’t at least ask?!

Since we dyed until right before shop closing, I didn’t get a chance to linger much. I paid for my new goodies and found a couple other souvenirs, and then… back to midtown Atlanta. I was honestly pretty sad to leave. So when’s the next pilgrimage??

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After class, I headed back into midtown Atlanta to meet Crystal for dinner. We ended up at Babalu, which was so insanely busy and so severely understaffed that after being seated right away (yay!) we nearly left after waiting at least a half hour just for wait staff to visit us (maybe even longer? boo!). On our way out the door, our waitress caught us and begged us to stay. We were both a little hangry, but decided to give her a chance… and it all ended up being very tasty and worth the wait!

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Plus, our waitress threw in some apology desserts for us. Yes, please!

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After dinner, we headed back to our hotel, the Artmore, to relax a bit. Crystal had hit up a bunch of art museums while I was at class and we were both pretty satisfied with how we spent our first full day of vacation. Some physical tiredness for her, and some introvert tiredness for me.

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