Dyevergence: Creative differences in the dye studio

October 16, 2020 2 min read

It's swiftly coming up to my third year at Countess Ablaze (already)

and during that time it's been interesting to see how a team of Aspies navigate around one another's workflows in the dye studio. The Countess has always been vocal about her dyeing being freestyle without precise measurements and that's how she taught me. My previous experience with colour meant I adapted to this style without any issues.

The differences in mine and the Countess's creative process started to become more apparent over time. While our primary dyeing techniques are the same, our workspace etiquette is very different.

 

The Countess likes an uncluttered workspace

and isn't afraid to let dyes mix in Pyrex bowls. She will usually have one or two bowls for mixing her dyes and one spoon that is used for mixing everything. This system means she knows exactly where everything is when she needs it and allows her to continue dyeing without interruption.

 

My space can only be described as organised chaos.

When selecting a dye from the shelves the Countess will use it and then return it to its colour-coded shelf while the pot on my side sets up camp on the desk. This is so I can rotate the colours around when creating a Rebel Batch so it means the collection has skeins that can be paired. I also have multiple spoons in use at a time for no other reason than I like how it looks having a row of them all leaking different splashes onto the kitchen roll.

One of our newest additions is the tea strainers we use for speckling dye onto the yarn. I have an awful habit of being like a dumper truck when using just a spoon so this is a welcome tool for dyeing for someone like me with a generous tipping hand. The Countess doesn't use them as often as me as she has a delicate hand for speckling colourways such as "This Ain't a Scene".

 

When dyeing it really helps to have another squad member to keep everything moving so that you always have the yarn ready to go in front of you.

Our ways of working are very different but I understand that my process can be distressing to the Countess when she is trying to work so I can be flexible. When it's just Ann and me, I can be as messy as I want (as long as I clean up after myself of course). It's really interesting to see how creative methods differ between people. I guess that's why dyeing yarn is such an enjoyable profession.

I will pass it on to you, do you think you would dye like the Countess in her methodical approach, or me and my systematic chaos? Let us know in UNDERGROUND, our new community on Mighty Networks.

Rock on and stay safe!

Blazin' Squad Haydn



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