Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Kool-Aid Dyeing...Ohhhhh Yeeeaaahhh!

I learned a new trick over spring break!!! My daughter and I (well, mostly me) Kool Aid dyed some Lion Wool! I was inspired by The Dye Pot and the instructions for crock pot dyeing at The Yarn Path. It was soooo slick! Oh, and when I went to Walmart for some white wool (it's the closest thing to a yarn store near me), they had all the Lion Wool on clearance for $3.50! Might not be the best wool ever, but it's going to be great to play with. I bought 6 balls.

I won't go into the specifics of what I did because a) it would take too long and b) just go the The Dye Pot and look through the yarns on the front page. Those are the basic instructions I followed. You need 1 packet of regular Kool Aid per ounce of yarn. A ball of Lion Wool is 3 oz. and for this one, I used two packages of grape and one of black cherry. These pictures are a pretty good representation of the color. It wasn't exactly what I was expecting but I absolutely love it! I've been coveting the semi-solid quality of hand-dyed yarns and this gave me exactly what I was looking for! As soon as it was dry, I knit it up into the Dashing fingerless mitts from the Spring Knitty. I made the swatch out of the leftovers. I love these mitts! They fit great and they really show off the hand-dyed yarn.

But wait, there's more!

As I read about Kool Aid dyeing, I ran across a tutorial on dyeing with Wilton Icing Dyes. Well, I have a 12 pack of Wilton dyes in the cupboard and thought I might as well give it a try. I followed the same general directions to use the crock pot, but you have to dissolve your Wilton dye in boiling water - or it just won't dissolve. I was going for a turquoise and tried 1/2 tsp. leaf green and 1/4 tsp. royal blue. The color is kelly green with a fleck of purple here and there because the dye must not have completely dissolved. I like it a lot, but have no clue what I'll make with it. Time will tell.

My most recent try at dyeing was an experiment with some Wool-Ease. I had two partial skeins in Fisherman and just knew that I'd never use them as is. I decided to use icing dyes and see if I couldn't color up the wool portion of the fiber. I used 1/2 tsp. Wilton Copper and 1/4 tsp. pink for 5 oz. of yarn. The water never fully became clear, but I expected it because the acrylic part wasn't going to pick up color. It turned out a nice heathered peach color. I'll have to make this up into some kind of spring accessory. I'd like to be more creative than fingerless mitts (I do soooo love those!), but that's all that's jumping out at me right now. Maybe a cowl or a short scarf?
I've got a cupboard full of Kool-Aid, 4 more balls of Lion Wool, and a rainy dreary day....might just have to do some more dyeing!

No comments: