25 May 2009

Dyeing is FUN!

Yesterday we had some vegetable dyeing experiments with white and grey wool yarns with Elzebeth and Sahra. I didn’t remember how fun it is to do vegetable dyeing. It has been beyond over ten years I have tried it last time. We had dried tansy flowers, fresh lupin (which has arrived to Europe about 1800s and is not medieval... but gives interesting colour), dried carrot greens and onion peelings. Before starting our experiment we soaked the vegetables in water overnight. Then we used alum for pre-mordant the yarns before dyeing. The tansy and carrot greens yarns turned out yellow and somewhat similar looking, lupin yarns was light green (very beautiful) and onion peelings yarns orange. And if I remember right, after dyeing once we put some iron sulfate to the tansy and carrot greens water to make the colour more like green and made second dyeing. I haven’t seen the results of second dyeing yet because we had to leave to home before the yarns was washed after dyeing. I will get the yarns after two weeks when I see Elzebeth next time. It was very hard to take pictures about the colours because the camera makes the colours look different than they are.

Yarns in alum water

Beautiful lupin yarns coming..

That's not spaghetti... :D it's onion yarns

Result from the first dyeing

We had other reasons to visit Elzebeth also. She is going to make the food for our wedding. We actually have almost complete list of foods that we are going to have... and it’s little bit over a year now before the big day. Of course something might change but the main things we know now. One of the reasons for planning the foodstuff this early was that we are going to make several liqueurs and other beverages to the wedding. That means we have to pick different kinds of vegetables, berries etc. this spring and summer. Hmm... I should pick nettles also just in case I need some :D.

18 May 2009

Viking Finn Apron

This is my first attempt to make a Viking Finn Apron with some bronze spiral decorations. The wool is not handmade, I found the wool from normal Finnish fabric store and I dyed it little bit. So that’s why there aren’t any (tube) selvedges or tablet woven fastenings on the edges as it should be. The original fabric was more light brown than the result. The wool I used is the same fabric than my blue overdress. Dyeing changes the wool little bit fluffier (as the washing the wool does also). Then I made four strings to the edges and made four corner decorations to the apron. The string and the bronze spiral decorations to the edges are made as the instructions for reconstruction about archaeological findings of Kaarina Kirkonmäki from about 11th century. Only change I made was with the strings that are holding the spirals together. I am not very good to make 3-loop fingerloop braids, so I took a shortcut and made plain braids.

16 May 2009

Vegetable dyed threads

Usually I don’t have to work during weekends, but today was exception. After work I went to a small gift store called Päkäpirtti. It’s at OId Rauma (Old Rauma is one of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites... Old Rauma is the largest unified historical wooden town in the Nordic countries. And it is in middle of Town of Rauma, where I am working so I am always thought that my worksite is very unique and very beautiful place). The gift shop Päkäpirtti is as I descript small but very interesting because there is quite large selection of vegetable dyed wool threads. I am highly recommending the shop for every re-enactor! I also have to tell that the shop keeper is very nice person, I spend about one hour talking with her about dyeing and re-enactment and herbal things. I bought one yarn of yellow (dyed with tansy flower), one yard of red (dyed with Cortinarius semisanguineus mushroom) and one yard of green (probably dyed with tansy and meadowsweet) wool. I also love baskets so I bought this small basket at Rauma Spring Fair today.

13 May 2009

Computer problems solved and socks

I am so happy that our computer is finally fixed, thanks Robert! The problems took too long in my opinion (over a month). It is very frustrating when you can’t use your computer at home. It feels like you are missing a limb or something. I have to admit that I am that I am very much hooked on computers. But anyway yesterday Elsa and Robert take a short visit to us. It was very nice to have quests (we seldom have). They promised to come to visit us more often, next time after two weeks :D. Elsa and I made plans for Elsa’s dress and for her Flemish kerchief. And plans for lots of other things. Today I finally made my order for some of the fabrics for our wedding dresses. I am still thinking about ordering some very light weight hemp and some medium hemp for our shirts. Ordering the fabrics from the internet was the biggest order for me this far (from internet I mean), so I am looking for very anxious what’s going to happen.

My first naalbinded socks are done. I made the socks last weekend for me (to wear at summer with the Viking shoes). I have started to make socks for Ulf also. Sahra is making at the moment a woollen cloak with real wolf fur decorations for Ulf. She is thinking about having it done till Summer Coronation. Can’t wait to see the finished cloak..

6 May 2009

My Lord needs clothes also!

I have been thinking about men’s clothing today. I want to do this and that to him but first I’ll do some early period clothing. I am thinking about maybe Kragelund tunic and Thorsberg trousers. If my Lord approves... :) .

4 May 2009

May Day x 3

I still have flu (nothing new about it) but I have little bit more strenght now than week ago. But I am not feeling completely well yet and I am starting to feel annoyed. It’s not very easy at work right now either... And I am very tired today. But I am also very happy about last weekend and also that I had time to relax.

Last weekend we went to Lahti to see Sahra and Knut and celebrate the May Day. The theme was supposed to be renaissance clothing for Sahra but we end up doing lots of other things... like cutting apple trees, collecting apple tree bark and lichen for dyeing...The weather was so wonderful that we spend most of the time at the garden. And we had three garden parties also...grilling, chilling and laughing alot. But luckily we were not too tired at Sunday and we had enough time to cut a smock and make pattern for Flemish kirtle for Sahra.

I now have some blue linen for my next Eura style under dress (I want something light to wear for summer and for the camping also). Suski promised to give me more bronze for the spirals...I have just enough spirals for the apron but that’s it. I want new shoes...

... and we still have some problems with our computer... so I can’t add any photos here yet (hopefully tomorrow)...