Friday, September 14, 2007


I've had some cream coloured merino 4-ply to dye for, oo, 10 months now. So I thought in my week off I'd best get on and do it. While I want to dye one ball with onionskins for a contrast toe and heel I don't actually have enough onionskins right now. So it was just a spot of stove-top Kool-Aid action.

Clockwise from the dark powder: black cherry, strawberry, two cherry.

Yarn spaghetti! I had a really rough time trying to make the colour penetrate the fibres. Was this because:
a) the yarn is machine washable; or
b) because I didn't wash it in wool wash first?

After all the dye was soaked up. Can you see how the water is clear now, compared to the really dark water in the above picture? This happened really quite quickly. It was simply a case of heat-till-colour-nearly-gone, feel like it should be more complex so turn off stove, cover pot and walk away for ten minutes, come back to completely clear water.

And here it is in the bathroom to dry. Yes, my tiles are really that colour. Floor and walls. The shower screen is bubbled yellow glass too. Yes, you can pity me. While the dye looks all nice and even in that picture, really, up close it's um... variegated... because of how the yarn didn't want to take the dye. I swooshed it about in the pot a lot, but I guess I missed some spots. So there's a little pale pink in there (no absolute cream, I'm pretty sure).

While this was fun, the real joy was in the simplicity, quickness and general lack of mess that Kool-Aid in a single colour entails. I'm not really cut out to be a hard-core dyer.

When dry, reskeined (oo! I learned how to wind centre-pull balls. Those of you rolling your eyes at the fact I didn't already know how to do this shut up!) these will be snowflake socks. Except toe-up, because that's how I like it.


Claudia said...

Ooh, lovely colour! Such a wonderful strong red. And I know all too well the joys of rented accomodation, so I entirely sympathise with the bathroom situation. :)

Clementine said...

How long did you pre-soak your yarn for? I've had the most success with dye when I pre-soaked with lukewarm water for about 30-40 minutes.

Looks lovely, anyway. Yay centre pull balls!

KnitXcorE said...

I usually pre-soak with vinegar and water, but the machine wash-ability may have made it a lil' bit harder to dye.

Girl Kae said...

What yarn did you use to do the dye?

Clare & Simon said...

Hey! thanks for your comment. I really like your kool aid wool - a great colour! Your blog is great - I look forward to reading back through it.