Thursday, August 20, 2009

I dyed today.

I dyed yarn for the first time today.
After the desire to dye (very different than to die) was stumbled upon, I scoured the web (mostly Ravelry) looking for information. I opted for Kool-Aid dyeing, but then found out you have to Kool-Aid dye animal fibers (like wool), which I didn't have. A feature I don't particularly care with wool is that it felts when it is washed. While felting is neat, the texture of felt kinda weirds me out. So, you can imagine the pleasant surprise when I dropped by AC Moore (to pick up the stuff to dye cotton yarn with), and found Superwash wool in the clearance bin! Woohoo - it was my lucky day!

Here is how today went:

1)Wrap ball of yarn around Niddy-Noddy to create a hank. It is not necessary to us a Niddy-Noddy; you can use the back of a chair for example. But why would I do that, if I can build, and have another little gadget to use?

2) Tie yarn in several places. I tied near each 'leg' of N-N (you can see the little colored strings). Slip yarn off Niddy Noddy, and soak thoroughly in lukewarm/coolish water. I added a tad of baby shampoo, because I read that helps the yarn absorb the water.

3) Mix yarn and Kool-Aid. I didn't want a uniform dye, so here was my approach. Put 2 packs of Kool-Aid in bowl. Add warm water. Mix. Dip partial skein of yarn into dye. Hold for a few seconds, put the rest in. Submerge yarn. Sprinkle packs 3 and 4 of Kool-Aid onto yarn. Wearing a glove, squish and swish yarn around in Kool-Aid dye. The yarn will begin absorbing the color, and therefore the dye. My assistant in this photo is my neice.

4) Cook mixture in microwave until water is totally clear. I cooked it for 2 minutes, stirred, then 3 more minutes. This is our finished product, which I'm very happy with.
It is exactly how I pictured it, and I love the variation in color - some is lighter, some is darker.
5)Hang in shower to dry.
6)Wind into ball.
7)Crochet or knit with your yummy smelling yarn! This is the most challenging part of it all - deciding what to make!
8) Beg family members and passer-byers for more Kool-Aid and Superwash wool, so you can dye again!

An added bonus? My house now smells like Berry Blue Kool-Aid!


Anonymous said...

That's so cool! And I love how it turned out :D

Thanks for the great instructions... this will have to be a project whenever I manage to get free time!

bobbins said...

Love the blue color! Thanks for the tips to achieving a less uniform color; it makes the yarn even more interesting.

Mandy said...

SUPER cool... But I notice that you are wearing a white shirt while dying yarn? Hmmmm.... ;)