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This first picture is of the first top I did this way after, dyeing and being unchained, fluffed and rechained and ready to go. This idea came to me by way of the dye happy list and fellow dyer Peggy who showed me the pictures of some top she dyed this way and explained how she used this method of chaining the top before dyeing and using a center spacer to prevent the dye from spreading too far. This first try was a 2 color blend and I most likely did not need the center spacer. This is an immersion dying variation of hand painting the top where the dye is poured where you want it to set .Chaining the top makes it easy to handle and I found it easier to move it with less chance of felting it or having the top separate into more than one section. By having the dye dissolved in hot water at the preferred ph for the dye the dye tends to mostly grab where it is poured and just a bit will migrate through the water to blend . I pre soaked the top in the pot while mixing the dye .

I did a half lb of Romney top chained and arranged in my largest dye pot . I had no glass handy so I used a 2 qt Stainless steam table pot as my center and arranged the chain around it ( compressing the chain as I put it in so the ends met rather than over lapped )The picture above is about how it was arranged in the pot,( Please note, the color looks extra deep as this was wet when I took the picture) I forgot to take pictures while I was working. I used a very large dye pot 1/4 way full of water with a squirt of ph neutral detergent and a tsp of citric acid That gave me a 4.5 Ph . Having the top chained made it very easy to handle . I mixed 1/4 tsp each of turquoise and violet using the hot water from the pot to dissolve the dyes each in their own 8 oz plastic yogurt cup . I had planned on 3 dyes but the 2 I mixed were so strong I decided not to push my luck , I used about 7 oz of the 8 oz of turquoise pouring an random splats Gently lifting the wool with my tongs where I wanted to get a darker splat I sprinkled another 1/2 tsp of the citric acid after the turquoise dye and then a few minuets later I added about 4 oz of the violet just pouring a bit here then there and left it on at about 200 degrees I turned it off about 30 min later and left it to cool over night . The water exhausted clear and the chain was so easy to gather up and place in a large colander to drain and rinse.

Above is the dry top before I unchained it . I found this was a great way to reduce the stress on the top . and the chain was done using my hand as the crochet hook. This was much simpler than braiding because I did not need 3 pieces so I did not have to separate the top.

In the above picture,, I had undone part of the chain and fluffed the top so the resist pattern shows. The chain was loose so there were no white areas left. I was very happy with the way this came out . I love trying new ways to get the dye on the fiber . any time I can make the dyeing more easy I am happy . I am very thankful to all the sharing members on the dyehappy list that share tips and tricks to make dye play more fun and less stress. Sue D

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