Monday, September 24, 2007

Adventures in dying

One of my assignments this week for class was to research a subject that I am interested in. I had this awful color of pink yarn that needed a transformation, so I choose to research dying your own yarn. It was a dk weight merino, and while I did not pay much for it, it would be a shame to waste such lovely and soft fiber.

I'm very happy w/ the results although I don't claim to be an expert by any means. Here's a list of the websites I found most helpful.

http://knitty.com/ISSUEspring07/FEATdyeyourown.html - includes instructions on using food coloring and vinegar to make your own, less toxic acid dyes. Demonstrates 3 different dying methods. I choose to use Wilton gel icing colors.

http://knittersreview.com/article_how_to.asp?article=/review/product/070830_a.asp - explains how to use the Louet hand dyed sock kit. Although it seems to be directions from the kit, this is the method I choose to use, I just adapted it to the food coloring and used squirt top bottles instead of syringes.

http://www.eunnyjang.com/knit/2005/12/techniques_selfstriping_yarn.html - explains how to make your own self-striping yarn. A bit of math is used and a bit more prep work, but I'm sure if I ever make ssy, I'll use this method.

Some other sites worthy of mentioning are:

http://www.knitty.com/issuefall02/FEATdyedwool.html - the basics of drink mix dying. Also has a photo of kool-aid dyed yarn w/ their corresponding drink packets so you can see what kind of colors to expect. I for one think Kool-aid is meant to be drank, but I love the lemon-lime dyed yarn looks. It reminds me of St. Patrick's day!

http://knitty.com/ISSUEsummer07/KSsum07GS.html - using solar power to heat set your yarn, very cool!

The garish pink yarn is the one in question. I think it looks worse when compared to the other 2 picted. On it's own, I almost decided I liked it. Ultimately, it reminded me too much of Dora the Explorer, so it had to go. Dyed yarn just out of the microwave. I really wanted to tear into this, but knew my patience would be rewarded. Just out of the ziplock bag and ready for a rinse and a soak in some wool wash. dyed yarn hanging out to dry away from nosey kids and dog. the color of pic on top is more accurate, pic on bottom shows off subtle variegation a bit more.

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