Finn Slough

My father was a Finnish Saami. After immigrating to Canada he became a commercial fisherman, gillnet fishing on the west coast of Vancouver. In the early 1960’s my dad purchased a small fishing shack from another long time resident of Finn Slough – Mr. Hämäläinen. In the summer months he would travel in his gillnetter fishing boat up the coast to fish in the small fishing villages of Sointula and Rivers Inlet. During the winter months he would return to Vancouver and repair his nets at his fishing hut at the mouth of the Fraser River.

Sam’s Smoked Salmon at Finn Slough

Salomon 'Sam' Halonen
Salomon ‘Sam’ Halonen

Sam Halonen Fixing Nets - Photo by Eero Sorila
Sam Halonen Fixing Nets – Photo by Eero Sorila

Photo Art by Robert Lane

Sam at Finn Slough -
Sam at Finn Slough – 1000 Dyke Road – photo by Robert Lane

Finn Slough Fishing Shacks
Finn Slough Fishing Shacks
Finn Slough View
Finn Slough View – photo art by Robert Lane
Finn Slough Dock
Finn Slough Dock – photo art by Robert Lane
My Family at Dad's Fishing Shack
My Family at Dad’s Fishing Shack

More about Finn Slough
Finn Slough Heritage Society
Michael Kluckner
The Fishing Village of Finn Slough by Eero Sorila

Chi Perspective – Robert Lane

Paivatar Acid Dyes

I have been using acid dyes for many years to dye wool, silk and other protein fibres. I used to use the CIBA brand of acid dyes but I can no longer find them. So I went on a search for other acid dyes that work in a similar fashion. After much trial and error, I have located a range of dyes that I am happy with.
These dyes are an industrial strength acid dye that has low environmental impact.
The dyes come in a powder form and can be an irritant to your nose and throat as they are a very fine powder. So I find it best to mix the dye into a stock solution when you first purchase them. This is easily done by making the dye into a paste with cold water, and then adding 1 litre (or quart) of water. The dye stock must be heated to +80 degrees C to dissolve the dye. Once the dye is dissolved, pour the stock solution into a Mason or Kilner jar and it is ready to use. The dye stock will safely last for 6-12 months. I have some dye stock that has lasted me +2 years.

To use the dye, add some vinegar or citric acid to your dye pot filled with water. I always use a pH tester to check the acidity of the dyebath. These dyes work best when the pH is between 3-4. A lower pH can cause the wool to become harsh, much the same as a high pH can do to wool.

To dye a strong colour, I add a tablespoon of dye stock to the dyebath, mix the solution and heat the dyebath to +60 degrees C and add wetted wool or silk. It is best if the yarn has been thoroughly soaked in water first, in order to get an even colour. For stronger colour, add more dye. To get lighter shades add less dye.
In order to mix colours, you can add one or more of the dye stock colours to the dyepot. You will need to experiment to see what colours you can create.

I don’t like to waste dyes so I never throw out the dye solutions but reuse them until all of the dye has exhausted and the water is clear. If you can’t complete all your dye work on the same day, the dyes can be kept and reused for several days. Sometimes a bit of mould may develop on top of the dye solution. This is caused by the vinegar that has been added to the dye solution. You can safely wipe this off with a paper towel and continue using the dye solution until exhausted.

If you need to dispose of the dyes, it is best to pour them into the sewage system where the dye is removed by adsorption onto the activated sludge at the local treatment plant and so does not enter the environment.

I now have these dyes available for sale as a dye kit. The kit will include 10 grams of each dye colour. This is sufficient dye to make 1 litre of each dye in a 1% dye stock solution.
The colours included in the dye kit are the 3 prime colours (Magenta, Cyan, Yellow) and 2 Worker colours that enable you to make different shades of red and blue more easily.

Magenta – Rhodamine Acid Red 52
Cyan – Acid Green 25
Yellow – Tartrazine E102
Worker Red – Acid Red 57
Worker Blue – Acid Blue 62

Total Price per dye kit: £35.00
plus shipping

The Acid Dye Kits will be available soon in myPaivatarYarn Shop on Etsy or you can order from me directly if you wish. Please contact me if you would like more information.

I have MSDS sheets available on request.

Plant Dyed Rya Rug Yarns

For those who would like to make their own traditional style rya rug, I am now hand dyeing rya yarns using natural plant dyes. The world of plant dyes offers much variety and gentle colour to yarns. Each batch is uniquely dyed as the colour and shading varies depending on the soil and growing conditions of the plants, the acidity of the dye water and the length of time in the dyepot. This variety of colour gives a plant dyed rya rug a rich depth of shading.

I use high quality worsted spun wool for my hand dyed rya rug yarns. The yarns are quite soft to the touch. Rya rugs are not designed to be used as a floor rug but are meant to be hung on a wall as a tapestry and family heirloom. Please treat your hand made rya rug with care, so that you can pass it on to future generations. Plant dyes are more sensitive to gentle fading. Please hang your rya rug in a place that is not in direct sunlight, to help preserve the brightness of the colours.

Plant Dyed Rya Rug Yarn
Plant Dyed Rya Rug Yarn

If you are using my handwoven rya rug backing for making your own rug, the backing is woven at 15 knots per 10 cm.
I have worked out a rough chart of how much rya rug yarn you will need to purchase, based on a pile length of 3 cm and 4 strands of yarn per knot. If you wish to make a rug with a longer or thicker pile, then you will need to order more yarn than suggested.

Backing Width CMKnots per RowRows per MeterTotal Meters of YarnTotal GramsNo. Skeins
100 cm1508530601500 grams30 skeins
80 cm1208524501250 grams25 skeins
60 cm908518501000 grams20 skeins
50 cm75851550800 grams16 skeins
40 cm60851250600 grams12 skeins

Natural Plant Dyed Rya Wool Yarns

I am adding new plant dyed yarn colours on a continuing basis, as I dye and experiment with the dyes that are available and in season. I use both local plants and natural dyes from around the world.
Here is the current selection of plant dyed yarns.
All yarns are hand dyed at the time of your order. Please allow 2-3 weeks for completion of your order.
Please contact me if you have any questions or would like to place an order.

The Rya rug yarns are sold in 50 gram skeins.
Each skein has approx. 120 meters per skein.
Cost per skein: £15.00 GBP plus shipping.

Reds
Reds, Pinks and Orange shades of colour can be obtained by changing the pH of the dyebath, the amount of dye used and the length of the dye soak.

Indian Madder Root - Rubia Cordifolia
Indian Madder Wool Yarn
Indian Madder Wool Yarn
Madder Dyed Yarn
Madder Dyed Rya Yarn
Madder  Light Rya Yarn
Madder Light Rya Yarn
Brazilwood - Caesalpinia Sappan
Brazilwood Dyed Wool Yarn
Brazilwood Dyed Wool Yarn
Brazilwood Light Rya Yarn
Brazilwood Light Rya Yarn
Brazilwood Madder Blends
Brazilwood Madder Rya Wool Yarn
Brazilwood Madder Rya Wool Yarn
Madder root Pinks Plant Dyed Yarns
Madder Pinks Plant Dyed Yarns

Yellows
From rich golds to soft and pale yellows. Most flower petals and leaves provide a source for yellows. Many of these colours have been obtained from local dye plants and are seasonal.

Himalayan Rhubarb - Yellow
Himalayan Rhubarb Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Tan Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Tan Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Yellow Plant Dyed Yarns
Himalayan Rhubarb Yellows
Eucalyptus Leaves - Yellow
Eucalyptus Leaves Yellow
Eucalyptus Leaves Yellow

Purples
Purples Lilac and Grey colours are made by blending different natural plant dyes together.

Brazilwood Madder Alkanet
Brazilwood Madder Rya Rug Wool
Brazilwood Madder Rya Rug Wool
Alkanet
Alkanet Purple Rya Rug Yarn
Alkanet Purple Rya Rug Yarn
Alkanet Light Rya Rug Yarn
Alkanet Light Rya Rug Yarn
Alkanet Grey Rya Rug Wool
Alkanet Grey Rya Rug Wool

Greens
Most green colours are made by blending Blue Indigo dyed yarn with one of the Yellow natural dye plants.

Himalayan Rhubarb - Indigo
Himalayan Rhubarb Indigo Light Green Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Indigo Light Green Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Indigo Dark Green Rya Wool
Himalayan Rhubarb Indigo Dark Green Rya Wool

Blues
Blue colours are made by dipping yarn into natural Indigo or Woad vats. The depth of colour can vary greatly depending on the strength of the Vat and the number of times the yarn is dipped into the dye Vat.

Indigo - Indigo Fera Tinctoria
Indigo Blue Light Rya Wool
Indigo Blue Light Rya Wool
Indigo Blue Rya Wool Yarn
Indigo Blue Rya Wool Yarn
Indigo Dark Blue Rya Wool
Indigo Dark Blue Rya Wool
Indigo Blues Plant Dyed Yarns
Indigo Blues Plant Dyed Yarns

Tablet Woven Bands

Another style of band that I weave are woven using tablets or cards. The tablets usually have 3-6 holes and the warp yarn is threaded through. Complex patterns can be woven by twisting or turning the cards in different directions. The end of the warp can be tied to a post, a table leg, and is woven backstrap style. The warp can also be wound onto a small loom that helps control the tension while weaving.
Narrow bands using tablets has been woven in Karelia and Finland since the early Iron Age. Many of the woven belts that I weave use these traditional Karelian patterns. I use hand dyed wool that I have dyed with natural plant colours to weave these belts and sashes.
Please visit my PaivatarYarn Etsy shop to see some of the latest designs and the plant dyed tablet weaving yarns. If you would like to have a Karelian style belt made for you, please contact me regarding a special order.

Shibori Indigo Dye Workshop

You will learn the basics of how to prepare and maintain an Indigo dye vat. We will use 2 different Indigo vats, a Fructose and an Iron vat as well as Saxon Blue liquid Indigo. You will have the opportunity to dye linen, cotton and wool fabrics and yarns with the Indigo vats.

We will cover some Shibori resist dye methods using traditional Japanese knotting and stitching techniques for adding additional patterning to the dyed fabrics. You will go away with an Indigo dyed cotton scarf, a cotton market bag and hand dyed yarn samples.

All dyes and course materials will be provided.
Coffee, tea and light refreshments will be provided. Please bring along a packed lunch.

Course length: approx. 6 hours
Time: 10 am – 4 pm
Course Fee: £75
Materials Fee: £25
Total £100

2 persons £160

I have a small studio space so can only accomodate up to 2 participants at a time.

Dye Flora Plant Dyes Workshop
50 Shades of Colour Dye Workshop

Craft Courses Indigo Dye Workshop

Spin Flora not Fauna Workshop

A hand spinning workshop for the discerning hand spinner who wants to try something new. With developments in textile technology, wonderful new fibres for the hand spinner have become available. Derived from materials previously thought of as waste, these fibres are reclaimed from plants such as bamboo, bananas, rose stems, mint and other cellulose materials. You will get a surprise goodie bag of several different, luxurious flora spinning fibres to spin during the class. This hand spinning course is designed for the more experienced hand spinner.

Spin Flora Starter Pack
Spin Flora Fibres

The hand spinning courses require that you bring your own spinning wheel. Sometimes I will have an extra spinning wheel that you can borrow for the workshop.
The course fee includes materials required for the workshop.
Course Length: 5 hours
Workshop Fee: £80.00
Materials Fee: £20.00
Additional spinning fibre may be purchased afterwards if you would like more practice.
Coffee, tea and refreshments will be provided.

Sami Reindeer Bracelets

These Sami style bracelets are handmade in the tradition of my ancestors. I use natural reindeer leather and tin thread to make the bracelet to your custom size and colour. The Sami bracelet is attached with a reindeer antler button. The bracelets are made using a simple yet classic design that is suitable for men and women of all ages.

Tin thread was known as the poor man’s silver. The Saami would melt down pewter or tin plates and spin the metal into a fine thread which they used to make jewellery and decorate their clothing and other items.
Please look for my latest design of Sami Reindeer Leather and Pewter Bracelets and Armbands in my Paivatar Yarn Etsy shop.
Please contact me if you would like to discuss a custom order.