Friday, 30 March 2018

Dyeing Easter Eggs botanical style

Easter Eggs Botanical style

Eco dyed eggs are an easy project for children and adults alike

I’ve been dyeing yarn and fabric and making contact prints using botanical material for years now. One of my favourite times of year is Easter, not just for the chocolate 😃 but because it’s an excuse to dye eggs.  The patterns on paper and fabric are unique and satisfying. (see some  below) 

Eco prints using leaves - book covers

Plants make beautiful prints on paper and fabric

Dyeing eggs is an activity that everyone in the family can do, in fact, having an extra pair of hands at the wrapping stage is  very ‘handy’, ( ;-) pardon the pun!) You will find everything you need in the kitchen. 

-Eggs (I purchased the cheapest eggs and cooked a dozen (in case of breakages) 
-Food dye - use half of the dye to get a strong colour and enough water to cover the egg
    (You can use fabric dyes but this equipment must be used only for dyeing, not for cooking. )
-small flowers or leaf matter:  small ferns are great, impatien flowers, daisies, flowers with small petals
-Onion skins – 2 handsful (either red or brown onions work best and just the outer skin, no flesh)
-Saucepan for onion skins
-Saucepan for food dye
-Dessertspoon (to lift eggs out when hot)
-Small bowls to mix dye in
-narrow sticky tape
-bowl to sit eggs in once they are dyed
-old pantyhose/ stockings – cut off the body part and cut the legs into sections. Allow about 8” (20cm) for each egg. 
-sticky dots or sticky shape labels (these can be attached to the eggs as a resist)

1.  Place eggs into cold water, bring to the boil, boil for 3 minutes and allow them to cool.
2. Put onion skins in enough water to cover them, bring to the boil, simmer for 30 mins to increase the colour.
Spread out the stocking with your hand
place the egg in then position plant
matter around it
3. Cut stockings into sections. Tie ONE end of each section.
4. Sit boiled egg into stretched-out stocking.

Sometimes stretching the stocking
over a cup helps if you don't
have a second set of hands
Gently place plant matter around the egg and then release the stocking over the egg. Rearrange plant matter if it has moved. 
This is where two people come in handy – one to hold the stretched stocking and the egg, the other person to arrange the plant matter and tie up the top of the stocking.  

6. OPTIONAL** Place sticky dots on the outside of the egg; OR… put sticky tape around the eggs to make straight lines
Twist the top of the stocking to secure the
 egg inside, then knot it

7. Secure the top  of the egg parcel with a knot.

Egg parcels ready for the dye pot

Daisy flower 

Add caption

(left) Sometimes, even boiled eggs can crack when being placed inside the stocking. 😡 This one could have been boiled a little longer...😖

8. Bring water in a small saucepan to the boil and add your chosen food colour (or fabric) dye. 
9. Slide the egg parcel  into the food dye pot or onion dye pot.  

Moisten the impatien white flower so it sticks to the edge of the egg
10. Leave bubbling away for 10 minutes.  Remove and allow to cool down.

Voila! Dyed easter eggs for your table. 

The impatien leaves its mark by resisting the dye

I love the fern imprint the most.  

If you dye eggs with your family, post pictures to share on Facebook (and tag me 'Linda Douglas Brisbane')  or on Instagram and use the hashtag   #wildaboutbooksnprint #dyedeastereggs2018  #wildaboutyarneggs

Happy Happy Easter to everyone. Stay safe and eat plenty of chocolate.

Lu xxxx

NOTE: With all the heating and cooling and then leaving eggs out on the table for show, I don’t recommend eating these dyed eggs. J ) Eat the chocolate ones instead...


To all my yarn loving followers here and on IG, I have a new enamel pin  and I'm loving it!  Put it on your project bag to remind you to take time to relax and do cosy things with friends or family or on your own.  Find it here: Enamel pin, Make time for Hygge 

You will probably  know how important hygge (pronounced as hue-ga) is to the Danish community as there are many books and articles about it lately.  Hygge is not something we do for one month -it's a lifestyle choice and it's something everyone everywhere can do.  I hope you like the pin and purchase one for you  or for a friend.  (Postage is $3.50 for up to 3 pins in one parcel)
to relax and spend time with friends.  It is shown below.  Find it here...

Friday, 16 February 2018

New Enamel Pin, cheeky enamel pin

                     Diary Entry: Feb 17, 2018
                   At last, dear Diary, I can let out the secret I've been keeping for a couple of months now! 


News Flash! thank you, thank you! 
I'm loving my trips to the post office to send out pins to everyone. Thank you so much! 
Not tonight I'm knitting!

Yes, it's Valentine's month, and yes, it's the loved-up month but sorry, knitting is also a passion and we suffer withdrawal if we don't get to do something for ourselves.  Now that Valentine's day is over, let's settle back down to knitting.  

  I hope you purchase yourself this first enamel pin from Wild ABout Yarn and put it on your project bag!  They're great gifts to give yarny friends too. (*** You can purchase up to three in one bag without paying extra postage, OR... pay postage per item and I will send them to anyone anywhere  with a card) 

Click here to go to my Etsy shop.  

Light, hard enamel, push pin backing  
For those ME time moments...
Yarn: Blushing by Wild About Yarn

 I've enjoyed the process and my manufacturer has   been awesome so keep a      look out for another to      add to your collection next month and support            small business. 

        Happy knitting
            & Stitching 
     and happy weekend.  

Lu xx

Instagram:  @wildaboutyarn  

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Making Christmas Jewellery

 II - I love making these fabric circles. 
Make a unique necklace
with leftover scraps.
Round and Round the Christmas Tree I & II

If you want a quick project and you have fabric and yarn lying around (that just about includes 99% of my followers! :-) then this is an easy and creative way to make yourself a stand-out  couple of Christmas day necklaces. Email me for the pattern at 
(Sorry, I did have  the PDF of the patterns on Ravelry but was notified that there was a sewing component and that is not allowed)

You’ve seen this design  on the left MANY times before. Now go make one.  :-)  They’re fun and easy.  After all, what could be easier than crocheting one round of HTR?

Here's a heads up with the materials list for the Crochet circles:
Scraps of yarn, tapestry needle, cord 1m, beads, parrot claw closure, crimps to close off raw edges of cord.

Here's the list for the fabric circles:

-  Fabirc in 5 colours - you will mix and match them
-Felt in 5 colours, green,dark green, yellow, blue, red
-Packet of self covered buttons – 1inch
-Green and red embroidery thread
-Sewing needle
-Sewing thread in any colour (use this to gather the circles.  This thread will not be seen.)

Can't wait to see you rocking your Christmas necklaces.

Tag me #wildaboutyarnchristmas #roundandroundthechristmastree 

Happy stitching,
Lu x

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Issue 4, Wild About Yarn Magazine out now PLUS bonus free magazine


I was so happy to finally get Issue 4 of Wild About Yarn Magazine out on the PDF 'shelves' and sent off to subscribers all over the world!  Have you seen it yet?  Even better that I could offer a bonus FREE magazine that traces the history of knitting from the 1920s to the 1960s. (When postage in Australia increased by 40 percent between two of my issues, I had to make the sad decision to publish the magazine as a PDF download but the feedback has been positive.)   
Casey Maura 

it was with delight that Casey Maura and Amy Appel both accepted  my invitation to be our feature maker and designer respectively. This was another bonus as I've admired their work for a while now.  Casey epitomises vintage in almost every way from her 1940s and 50s inspired dresses to the sweaters she knits, often acting as a test knitter for other designers including Amy Appel. Casey has a regular podcast  on which she discusses her knitting, sewing and spinning, and Amy  can be found on Ravelry with several design ranges and a swag of fellow knitter/ followers who love her sweater and turban designs. 

The next addition to the Rockabilly Queen Collection
The Money Honey Turban
Find it here: Money Honey Turban

New sock pattern from Casey
Find them here:
Mischief Maker Socks

I couldn't wait to announce their new  designs.  Casey has just published her first sock pattern, Mischief Maker Socks  (I hope to start mine soon when the KAL commences in 2018), and Amy is adding to her Rockabilly Queen Collection with the versatile Money Honey Turban- the KAL has just finished but you can still find it on Ravelry.  

A little knitting history... 

Knitting and crochet have had a bad rap  for a long time and I'm not so sure that they've gained more status despite how hard creators and makers have worked to bring them into the 21st century.  they are still considered an activity for older women and perhaps we'll never re-educate everyone on how incredible designers are now.  I'm heartened to see women of all ages  reviving it in huge sweeps with innovative and vibrant designs.  It's ironic that it's now considered more a 'woman's activity' when it is believed that the first knitters were fishermen.  In the  Middle Ages, knitting was done exclusively by men who had to pass a series of exams and tests which took some 6 years to complete, in order to  be considered qualified professional knitters. By the 1400s, guilds were established but again, these were only for men. 

1920s- Flapper, masculine shapes

1930s feminine style, nipped in waists,
The true shift of knitting by women came in the Victorian era. In 1589, William Lee invented the first stocking frame knitting machine which is still in use today.  With the advent of this and subsequent knitting machines, there wasn't the necessity for  men to spend years doing their apprenticeships to become qualified knitters.  Knitting machines did this for them, thereby diminishing the number of men who knit.  Knitting then shifted to a craft that women took up  in the home, but the activity of knitting was only considered 'a wifely one' not a professional one as it had for men.  Far from feeling that way, Amy Appel, in our  second interview, discusses how empowered she feels as a young woman, knitting in modern times, knitting anywhere and knitting with other women.   

Vintage supplement - bonus free issue  (24 pages)

Wild ABout Yarn magazine traces the collision of knitting and culture, of how politics, combat between countries and advances in technology shaped not only how we proceeded as a society but how knitting progressed. 

The main issue consists of two interviews, two articles-tips for adjusting Vintage Patterns in the 21st Century and the Make, Do and Mend Era of the 1940s.  And finally, in Kitchen Bites there's a recipe for Delicious Strawberry Swirl Vanilla cake. 

(Try it, I think you'll like it! Make it for your next knitting group gathering!)

The BONUS FREE issue is  24 pages jam-packed full of the history of knitting through the years.  It's been so much fun creating the mood boards for this issue.  I learned so much and I hope you do too.  

Find the link to my Etsy store here Wild About Yarn  This is a PDF download delivered directly to your email.  

Happy Yarning,
Lu x

If you make any of the  patterns, please tag your projects on Instagram with:

#wildaboutyarnvintage  #wildaboutyarn #vintagestyle 

You can find me here:

Instagram: @wildaboutyarn



Monday, 16 October 2017

OUT NOW!!!!!!!!! It took a while but here is the FOURTH issue of Wild ABout Yarn Magazine and I love it.  The theme is:

VINTAGE and we all love vintage knitting! 
Issue 4, Wild About Yarn, VINTAGE - BONUS FREE  magazine
included on knitting fashion through the decades
  PDF only available here:
Etsy: Wild About Yarn Magazine, Issue 4, VINTAGE PLUS bonus magazine free! 
Find more sneak peaks on Instagram: @wildaboutyarn 

Read about the era of 'Make, Do and Mend' 

The delightful Casey Maura - our featured maker who sews and knits
and finds time to podcast
 'Creative Musings' Casey's blog
Creative Musings Podcast

Amy Appel, our featured knitwear designer, loves Rockabilly style
and designs amazing, sassy garments.
Find Amy on Ravelry

 In this issue you will find two interviews, articles about vintage knitwear and how it differs from today's designs.  
Included for those looking for a project are: 
three patterns - a cute pair ofknitted bobby sox
                          - a knitted turban using simple lace and
                          - a crocheted collar - the inexpensive way for women to reinvent an outfit when rationing was enforced.  Women are so resourceful! 

PLUS...there is a bonus magazine included free!! J

This supplement focuses specifically on the decades
1920 - 1960 and takes a look into what was the knitted fashion, how events of the world shaped the garments that were made, what colours were used and what styles were created! (Did you know that bobby pins stopped being manufactured so women needed a way to hold back their hair. Welcome TURBANS!!!! Apart from being a chic addition to a wardrobe, they were practical and appeared in all manner of designs!) 
Lu Dougas, Publisher

If you make any of the  patterns, please tag your projects on Instagram with:

#wildaboutyarnvintage  #wildaboutyarn #vintage 

You can find me here:

Instagram: @wildaboutyarn

Find the magazine here: Wild About Yarn, Vintage Issue 4                   

And when I'm not up there, I am knitting..

Happy Yarning, 
Lu x

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Patterns for the Citrus Twist dyed yarns

 Yarn Stories  in the Citrus Twist Range
(left) *She ran naked through the citrus orchard
(middle) * Delicious blood oranges in her hands
(right) *And lime juice sprinkling on the earth below
 Patterns for Yarn Stories hand dyed yarn
'Citrus Twist' colourways

Hi  Knitters!   

 I thought I'd start a new feature for my hand dyed yarns by finding you some delightful patterns. This time it's knitting patterns but I'm sure you can come up with some crocheted designs. 

Sock yarn doesn't have to end up as a sock or two 😉 (although I know there are quite a few sock addicts out there or why would there be a hashtag for it? #sockaddict.)  

For those of you who are new 
to dyeing, 'naked' yarn is the natural 
colour BD = before dyeing.Have you seen  what I've done to the naked yarn I purchased? It's no longer 'naked'. 

My Merino sock base is soft, 437yards, 100gms, 85%merino/15%  nylon,  and wonderful to knit with.  Find my yarn on Etsy (click here Lu Douglas Designs, Etsy or on the ETSY icon right)  

 Go to this blog post to read about Citrus Twist dyed yarn by Lu and  how I started my Yarn Stories. I'm having lots of fun creating these ranges and I'm pleased to say that other yarn lovers are liking them too! 

A new feature of my dyed yarns is finding you some wonderful and easy patterns for you to make in the yarn. 

Feast your eyes on these gorgeous designs… (click on the links) 

Simple shawl - Jane Hunter  (free)     (Requirements -1 skein) A garter stitch shawl that would look great in any of the colours of Citrus Twist and an easy project for beginners wanting to learn how to knit shawls.

Shawl -  On the Spice market Shawl  -  5.20 euro
 (link -On the Spice Market Shawl  ) 
(Requirements 2 skeins)  This is  one of my most favourite shawls and would look so fresh  in the Citrus Twist colourways. 

Socks - Socks on a Plane on a Plane (free) 
socks on a plane

 (Requirements -1 skein) I have a soft spot for 
these socks having knitted two and wanting to 
cast on a third.

Shawl -  The Hitchhiker Shawl  3.90 euro    
(Requirements - 1 ½ skeins)This shawl has appeared in many feeds on social media and I still love it!

Yoga Socks (free) -  (Requirements -1 skein and enough left over to make more!)
(My Rose City Roller socks )

Anklet Socks  (free) -  
(Requirements less than 1 skein)   I love this free sock pattern and since these are short anklet socks, you'll have enough left over to make more! 

Baby cardigan - (click here Baby cardigan  £1.50 
 from Woolzone.  (Requirements -100g sock yarn so plenty left over)  The sweetest and most easy all-in-one cardigan. You could make matching booties or a beanie. 

Crochet shawl - free and skill level easy
(Requirements - 1 skein) I have long since loved the Elise shawl by Evan Pavlinski.  

Let me know if you make something from any of the three yarns on offer by using any or all of the hashtags

 #citrustwist #yarnstories #wildaboutyarn  
or email your photos to me at

I'd love to see it. 

Happy  Knitting, 
Lu x

Instagram: @wildaboutyarn
Etsy: ludouglasdesigns
Facebook: LindaDouglas

Monday, 5 June 2017

Citrus Twist - Yarn Stories- hand dyed yarn release

Citrus Twist, the new yarn from  Yarn Stories

I'm feeling zesty here in  Australia.  :-)  We're approaching winter so I need some SPRING in my life and what better than fruity handdyed yarn.  

 Last month I started the YARN STORIES series of hand dyed yarn.  First up was the Circus Series and the colours were vibrant and fun!   I've already seen some of the results from dear Customers. Thank you.  

But the story this month is all about the

Citrus  Twist
(see my Instagram post on @wildaboutyarn to watch a mesmerising video  creating a pattern of of citrusy coloured paint.)

You may not know but Yarn stories have a little more to them than just titles.   Put all the  colourway titles together and  you  might just get a tale. :-) )
 Citrus Twist -  Can you see the oranges, lemons and limes in this yarn? 
Let me introduce the colourways.....  

1. She ran naked through the citrus orchard - is a gorgeous mix of all the fruits

2. Delicious blood oranges in her hands -all the blush of  a true blood orange with its  deep orange, white and FLESHY peach colours

3. And lime juice sprinkling onto the earth below - ahhh, the greens in this need to be seen to be believed and
oh the speckles!!!!!!!
I'm a total speckle convert.  Lovely little sprinkles of colour in yellow, lime green and dark mid green!
 The naked (undyed) yarn responds so wonderfully to dyeing and it's so, so soft and beautiful to wear! 

Yarn facts
Base: 85 merino/15nylon mix,new sock yarn 
         4ply Fingering yarn
         437yards, 100gm of citrusy goodness
         Needle suggestion: 2.5mm - 3mm

Find these yarns in my Etsy shop (Click here Citrus Twist yarns or on the Etsy icon  on the right ) 

The most wonderful news is that postage anywhere now is only $9.50 per skein! This is such a huge saving  - posting yarn overseas has been pohibitive with the same parcel  previously being $21.00!!  

And there's soften the blow of any postage, we're including  a stitch marker (value $8.00)  every month, with EVERY PURCHASE as a thank you for being such a supportive community.  Each skein is hand dyed, cooked and dried to ensure quality.  All the yarns are permanent and washable by hand in warm water with a wool wash.  

I'm off to start some socks but which colourway will I choose?  

Happy Knitting, 
Lu x