A note about the background black. I pulled some old black wool I had in my wool closet to use and it just didn't "go" with my palette. Can you believe that a black can be the wrong color black?! I didn't. But there it was staring at me all wrong.
So I took out my crock pot late this afternoon when I got home from work, measured in one tablespoon of dye per 6" by 15" strip of black wool. I had six pieces, so I used 3 tablespoons of my 10=BLUE-PURPLE and three tablespoons of my 12=PURPLE-RED which were two of the dyes I used in Santa's coat. I figured that I could 'marry' my icky black with my palette this way. And wow did it work!
By the way, I have to say it again: I LOVE my crock pot. I just put the dye in warm water with a squirt of synthrapol, added the black strips, put on the lid and turned it on high for 1 1/2 hours. At 30 minutes I added 1/2 cup of vinegar. Then I took Alexander across the street to "Christmas in the Village" where he petted reindeer and watched the children play carols on their violins and played in the slush pile the Villagers make to treat the children to snowballs (remember we're in Houston). When I got home I processed the wool in my washer and dryer, and hooked it in the background this evening.
So if you don't know what to ask Santa to bring you this Christmas, and if you don't have a crock pot for dyeing, ask for a 6 1/2 quart with a timer and porcelain insert. It will change your outlook on dyeing because it is so darn simple and about as mess free as you are going to get. And what fabulous results!