This show got me thinking about doing something different and was my inspiration to weave a collection of wool hatbands, using yarn dyed with cochineal.
I went shopping on the web and found some New Mexico Churro yarn, handspun and hand dyed by volunteers at El Rancho de Las Golondrinas. In nearby Santa Fe, it is a museum dedicated to the history, heritage and culture of 18th and 19th century New Mexico. They have a very active fiber arts program!
The results were good, I think. It was fun to challenge myself to make interesting and varied patterns using only 19-25 threads. It is unusual for me to weave such narrow pieces with such thick yarns. I used my Ashford Inklette loom and wove these one at a time.
Some surprising color changes occurred during the rinsing process. The yellow turned to a rich gold color which I find particularly beautiful. The red-orange darkened to maroon. Fun!
After the first few, I started combining these yarns with some from my stash to create more varied color combinations. Mostly, I stuck with other yarns which were made in New Mexico.
After using up all six skeins from that original purchase, I found another source of naturally-dyed yarns on Etsy. The skeins pictured below were purchased from Heritage Yarn's Etsy shop.
It is a nice two-ply wool. The blue was dyed with indigo, and the gold with onion skins. Her yarn prices are VERY low and it is nice to work with.
Since there is more yardage in these skeins, I didn't feel as though I needed to be as conservative in using them. I am weaving on my Schact loom, and am able to warp it to weave two hatbands at a time. So far, I'm on my fifth one. Because the two-ply yarn is easier to work with, as is the larger loom, this group is going faster!