Friday, June 17, 2011

Yarn Dyeing - So Much Fun!

Base yarns - some grey unknown from the op-shop, approximately 10g. Bendigo Woollen Mills 'Luxury' in cream, leftover from this project, about 30g (I think).

Colours - Wilton food paste colours in red, yellow, blue and green. I made up each of these colours and also orange and purple. I used vinegar as the acid for fixing (I was using lots of bits and pieces I had found when looking up information, but it was a few weeks ago, so I don't remember the specifics - please don't follow my approximations, best to go and research it properly).

To apply the colours, I lay some Gladwrap on the table, and then the wool. I just poured the colour where I wanted it and gently massaged it in.

Once I had applied it all, I wrapped it up in the Gladwrap and popped it into a pan of hot water.

I kept the water just simmering or thereabouts (I wasn't getting too technical this time around). Once all the extra colour that floating around in the Gladwrap turned clear, I took the wool out to cool. On rinsing there was no extra colour loss.

To be quite honest, I was really, really surprised at the depth and vibrancy of the colours that emerged.

I did a swatch with the original grey yarn, as I wasn't sure what ply it was, but I got a bit bored just doing plain stitches, so I did a few yarn overs and knit 2 togethers to see what it would look like. I have come to the conclusion that is about an 8ply.

As I had a little more time left after dyeing those, I decided to do some small samples using a bluey-green 100% wool, also from the op-shop with the same colours, and also put the grey in the yellow, orange & red. I am liking the results.

There will be more yarn dyeing in my future - it was fun and a great way to use yarn that I don't like the original colour of :)