Here is a photo of the top of my stove on most days. Forget food. I cook wool.
I can't decide whatI love most about dyeing fiber. Maybe it's the smell of vinegar and wet wool permeating my house. Maybe it's that my fingertips turn a lovely shade of blue/green/red/brown/yellow that won't wash off for days. Maybe it's lugging heavy pots of hot dyebath and wool up and down stairs, setting them in the yard to cool (only if its snowy) and getting a backache in the meantime. There are so MANY reasons I love dyeing!
Probably the biggest reason I love to dye wool (and silk, but that's a different process) is the surprises. I may THINK I'll get some yarn or roving to look like one thing, but in the end it will have a mind of its own and look like something else. I've learned to hold my preconceived ideas loosely and wait to see what happens. I've also learned not to judge yarn or roving by its dyebath - I have to wait until it's rinsed and dried before I can see what it really looks like.
Finally, I've learned that all yarn is beautiful. I've dyed skeins and rovings that I thought were hideous only to have someone buy them and love them and make something wonderful with them. And I've dyed skeins and rovings that I thought were the most gorgeous bits of fiber art in the universe, only to have them left behind for a long time, until someone finally believed in them.
I'm getting ready to set up my etsy store! Stay tuned. EVERYTHING in the store will be beautiful, I promise.