Saturday, April 25, 2009

Hand Dyed Wool-Ease Yarn

So I will have a ton of extra wool ease yarn left over from my sampler afghan. I want my fast chunky blanket to have more color than cream, so I decided to try to dye this blend.

Now this yarn is a wool acrylic blend, so I thought that if only the wool got dyed, it could have an interesting effect. I thought that the wool content was as high as 40%, but it is actually only 20%. My concern grew as I found this website, and saw that with 5 packets of dye per ounce of yarn, they saw very little color effect in a wool-acrylic blend.

In my kitchen, the Lion's Brand Wool-Ease yarn soaked up the dye very easily. There is a whiteish halo on the yarn, which is likely the acrylic. I love the way it ended up!

General Protocol (Stove Top)
  • Soak yarn (about 1.5 ounces or 40 g) in water until it is wet
  • mix food coloring/KoolAid into 1-2 cups water
  • in a pot, pour the dye onto the yarn and add enough water so the yarn is just barely covered
  • Simmer for 30 minutes (a little past the time when the water is clear, I wanted the dye to be set really well.)
  • When I rinsed the yarn, very little dye came off. Wash with mild soap, and then hang to dry.
Kool-Aid Pink
  • 2 packets Pink Lemonade Kool-Aid, 2 packets Cherry Kool-Aid
This looked a little like ground beef while it was simmering (it completely freaked my roommate out!)

Kool-Aid Grape-Grey
  • 3 packets Grape Kool-Aid
I suppose that this must look purple when it is diluted to the drink, but the dye looked black... and the resulting color is very gray.

Boosted Kool-Aid blue raz teal
  • 2 Ice Blue raspberry lemonade Kool-Aid packets. 4 drops blue food coloring, 2 drops yellow
Bright and fun!

Purple Attempt - take 1!
  • 1 Kool-Aid Ice Blue raspberry lemonade packet, 1 packet pink lemonade. 5 drops blue food coloring, 10 drops red.
I was disappointed. I was hoping that the purple would come out as vibrant as the pink and the teal, but when combined the purple is fairly muted.

I'm super excited that I was able to dye this wool-acrylic blend! Now my remnant afghan will have some more punch to it and stand out more than the sampler afghan.

Some helpful dying references