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Sunday, May 29, 2016

Dying Wool

If I purchase wool or yarn at the yarn store, I miss out on a lot of fun.  I like to purchase wool directly from a farmer.  I scour the wool.  Then I place wet scoured wool in a pot of water treated with vinegar or salt, depending on the type of dye I plan to use.  This will allow the dye to activate and stay on the wool.    I like to place a stripe of powdered dye across the pot on one end.  Then a couple inches away I place another stripe of powdered dye.  I usually make 3 to 5 stripes of dye.  I keep in mind that blue next to yellow will make green.   Yellow next to red will make orange.  Green next to red will make brown.  Too many colors will make a big pot of muck!

Drying freshly dyed Shetland.wool.


I also like to purchase a whole fleece.  It is usually a little less expensive that way.  My favorite wool to spin is long, white,  kid mohair,  It costs as much as $65.00 per pound in some places.

Happy day!  Dawnie

Monday, May 23, 2016

Spinning


 All hand-spun items recently made.


in progress

baby hat

trivet

trivet

trivet

trivet

small child hat
Please view my web store at:
 http://www.custercottage.com
And visit my Etsy shop at:
https://www.etsy.com/shop/CusterCottage
 
I hope you had a great weekend!
Dawnie




Monday, May 9, 2016

Purple Trivet



I have been spinning more lately.  I have enough wool in my stash to spin for the rest of my life.  LOL  I prefer to purchase the wool directly from the farmer.  I want to scour (wash), comb, dye, and spin the wool myself.  I sometimes die the wool before I spin it and at other times, I dye it later.  I like to display my teapots and tea cozies cover them up.  Tea cozies serve a purpose, but when you want to show off a tea service, it is nice to make a trivet for under the pot.  I also like to recycle when I can, so my trivet has used blue jean fabric on one side.  The other side is a pretty floral.  In-between  are 2 thin layers of cotton batting.  A purple button has been sewn in the center of both sides of the trivet base.  I spun rainbow dyed kid Mohair fleece in such a way as to allow many of the curls to show themselves off. After this, I crocheted the yarn in a circular pattern.  The center hole is large enough to be buttoned on the denim side of the base trivet or onto the the pretty floral fabric side of the base trivet.  Of course, the base can be used alone and the crocheted Mohair piece can be used alone.  I have a couple more trivets in the making with a few different things going on.  I will be showing them soon.



I don't think the pictures do it justice.  It is very vibrant and pretty!






Thank you for viewing!  Dawnie

Sunday, May 8, 2016

The Salty Sailor Handmade Soap



The Salty Sailor
The Salty Sailor

Handmade Soap


Salty Sailor soap includes beer, sea salt, shea butter, and coco butter, along with other ingredients. 

Named salty sailor due to the sea salt and the beer.  Sailors are known to have salty behavior and beer would aid with that.    







I hope you had an enjoyable weekend!



Happy Mother's Day

Please view my web store at:
 http://www.custercottage.com


And visit my Etsy shop at:
https://www.etsy.com/shop/CusterCottage
 
Thank you for tuning in!  Dawnie


Saturday, April 30, 2016

Fall Harvest Soap

Fall Harvest


I made this soap earlier this week.  The fragrance I used is called pumpkin souffle.  It actually smells more like the fragrance burnt sugar. This fragrance turns the soap a darker color.  I used a brown mica soap mixture, plain soap batter, and a white soap mixture with titanium dioxide to make the swirls.  I love how every bar is totally different.

What have you made lately?

I hope you have a great weekend!!!  Dawnie 


Please view my web store at:
And visit my Etsy shop at:







Sunday, April 24, 2016

Good, Bad, and Ugly

About a month ago I made blueberry soap.  I used a fragrance oil I had in stock.  It tends to turn soap a little brown and some of the blue micas will morph when used with it.  It turned very ugly.  The swirls were great, but the it almost had a greenish-brown film on the outside.  When the film is removed, it appears again.  This soap was requested and I couldn't sell something that looked like this mess.  I made another batch of blueberry soap last week.  I purchased a new fragrance oil and coloring.  Instead of micas, I used pigment.  Pigment tends to hold up better when soap is acidic.  There is a tiny bit of darkening, but the blue is pretty.

New batch of blueberry soap: 






Old batch of blueberry soap after curing a month.  Yuck!:


You can see the big difference.  Even seasoned soap makers make ugly soap on occasion.


Plain Jane soap without color or fragrance.  Colloidal oatmeal is on on top and in the soap.
New Christmas Holiday soap in the mold.


Grand-baby and her chicken.  She isn't quite 2 in this pictures and she goes out to the chicken coop with her daddy and helps with collecting eggs and feeding the chickens.  She will also pick up chickens and give them loving hugs. 

Thank you for viewing.  
I hope you have a wonderful week!  
Dawnie


Please view my web store at:
And visit my Etsy shop at:



Sunday, April 10, 2016

Cherry Almond Soap & Other Things

I turned 60.

Evening blooms.


Cherry Almond Soap.




Thank you for viewing!  Dawnie

Please view my web store at:
And visit my Etsy shop at: