Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Speckled Yarn with Dry KoolAid

Speckled yarn is so cool!  I already made one speckled yarn out with McCormick's food coloring but I wanted to experiment with some dry Kool-Aid, too.

Using some left over KoolAid powder a fork and yarn presoaked in vinegar and water, I created some magic.  This worked way better than I expected.  The powder didn't stay dry on the yarn for long, so I immediately ended up with bright, vibrant patches of color.

After applying the Kool-Aid to the yarn, I rolled the yarn up in the plastic wrap and microwaved it to set the color.  Check out the following video to watch the magic. I hope you enjoy what I created!

Dyeing Conditions and Materials:
  • KnitPicks Stroll Glimmer (Bare) yarn - The yarn base is 70% superwash merino, 25% nylon, 5% stellina
  • Presoaked the yarn overnight in 16 cups of water + 3 T white vinegar.  20-30 minutes would be sufficient to thoroughly soak the yarn.  I squeezed out most of the water before applying the dye. 
  • Dyes - Dry Kool-Aid powder applied to the fiber with a fork dipped in watee.  
  • I steamed the finished yarn in the microwave heating the fiber in 2 minute increments until it was hot to touch.  After letting the yarn cool I heated it a second time before allowing it to cool completely.  
  • After cooling, I washed the yarn with some liquid dish soap and luke warm water.  

The specks of color are much smaller than what we got from using an eyedropper and dots of food coloring.   There are so many cool things that could be done with this technique.  Can you imagine combining speckled yarn with dip dyed yarn?  What about creating an ombre of specks on a pre-knit dye blank?  This is so much fun!

I've now tried two different methods of creating speckled yarn: applying dry Kool-Aid and using an eyedropper to apply food coloring.  The specks of color are much smaller from the Kool-Aid technique but it might be possible to use the fork to apply a solution of concentrated food coloring in a similar method.

Make sure you follow the ChemKnits Tutorials YouTube channel to check out other dyeing experiments I attempt!