Dyed frog

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I decided to rip out that sock and redye the yarn. It was one of three 100 gram-skeins/hanks of yarn that I dyed in the crock-pot last year (and never blogged about). The other two turned out great and I’ve knitted one already into a pair of socks.

I was cleaning out parts of the basement last summer and lo and behold I found packets of dye! Sunshine Crafts Batik dyes. Let’s just say I acquired these a long, long, long time ago in a place far away. Along with my fantastic find, I also bought some professional Jacquard dyes in some basic colors.

This is my first foray into using dyes other than food coloring and Easter egg dye and it was a great experience. In the future, I will reread the ratios of dye to water. I just winged it when I mixed the dye and the two colors were VERY concentrated giving deep, intense hues.

My original plan was to use Azure blue and Brilliant blue. I swapped out Jet back for the Brilliant blue as the Azure was blue enough.

It was warm enough last week to set my amateurish dye station on the picnic table outside. Mr. Aitch does not like the smell of wet wool and vinegar so all my dyeing is now done either in the garage or outside. And no microwave dyeing either.

L to R: Crock-pot, white vinegar, H2O, dyeing spoons, dyes, syringes, yarn, dye mixing tub, gloves.

I soaked the yarn in a water/vinegar solution overnight. In the morning I twisted the yarn so I would retain some of the lime green colors and the blues and black would blend together into a navy blue with some teal areas.

Then I placed it in my cold crock-pot with enough water and a slog of vinegar to cover. The acid in the vinegar helps the fiber to absorb the dye. It took over two hours for the water to get hot enough before I could add any dye!

Oops, I forgot to twist the yarn! The heat is on

Once everything was ready I loaded up syringes with the blue and black dyes and squirted it into the twisted skein. The dye struck almost instantly as I probably had too much vinegar in the dye mixture.

I played with adding dye in various places for about an hour. Mr. Aitch helped photograph with yarn when I checked it before untwisting it. Too much lime green was still visible so I kept squirting dye onto those areas.

The yarn sat in the dye bath until the water was clear. Then the impatient me had to wait until the yarn was cool enough to rinse. Because the dye was so concentrated, it took a long time to rinse out the extra dye…(no showers for me for at least a week! Just kidding)

Clear water. All the dye is absorbed.

The finished product.

Even though it’s not what I planned, I still love it.

The colors are so rich and varied.

Socks for sure! It takes about 65-75 grams of yarn for a pair of knit socks. I will have some leftover to use as an accent toe/heel, add with another yarn for striped socks, or the slipped stitch socks I love to knit.

Patti

Cliff Walk revisited

The leg and heel turn are done and I’m part way up/down the foot of the Cliff Walk socks.

I’m loving the colors of this hand-painted yarn.

This close-up of the stockinette stitch on the bottom of the heel and foot shows the range of colors created.  No color pooling as I randomly applied the dyes.

Have a great weekend!

Hand painting yarn

I hand painted/dyed a 100-gram skein of Knit Picks Stroll Bare (undyed fingering yarn) using Paas Easter egg dyes and some blue food coloring.

Hand painting means to apply the dye by hand rather than submerge the yarn in a dye bath.  Dyeing by hand is less predictable and is nearly impossible to replicate than other types of dyeing.  Submerging yarn (or fabric) in a large dyepot or vat can be reproduced as the dye penetrates the fibers in a more uniform manner.

The fixative for setting this dye is acid i.e. white vinegar.  I just followed the instructions for the ratio of vinegar to water:  Three tablespoons of vinegar to dissolve the dye pellets to 1/2 cup water.  I used 2-3 dye pellets per 1/2 cup water to get more intense colors.



After the yarn was saturated with color, I wrapped the yarn in plastic wrap and nuked it 2-3 minutes at a time and allowing it to cool between so as not to scorch or burn the yarn.  Once it came out of the microwave sizzling, I let it cool before rinsing it in warm to then cool water till it ran clear.  It turned out beautifully.

A lovely mix of blues, greens, and a hint of purple.

But I wanted deeper colors for the Cliff Walk socks.  The Midnight Heather and black were just too dark for my aging eyes.

Back into the dye pot, or rather the dye plastic wrap/microwave.  One of these days I will find a large enough pot that I can dedicate to dyeing.  That day hasn’t arrived yet.

This time I used blue, purple and red dye pellets.  I think I went overboard with the red though I only used one tablet mixed with a blue one and a purple one.  I mixed up three different iterations of the dyes and squirted them using one bottle without washing it in between colors.

I like this much better for socks.  The red isn’t as intense as it looks here.

I can still see variations of the original teals and blues.

Another dip in just blue would probably tone down the reddish purple but at this point, I am done experimenting with the yarn.

I just want to knit it up!

Not for eggs

We needed a loaf of bread the other day so I went to the small market closest to our house.  I spotted these as I was walking past the clearance table.

Fourteen boxes of Easter Egg dye marked down to $.65 each.

I bought them all and used some on a skein of Knit Picks Bare fingering yarn.  I’ll show it to you as soon as it dries…which might take a day or two what with all the muggy, rainy weather we’ve been experiencing.

Anyone have an idea for all the wire egg dippers I have accumulated??