Tuesday, August 7

Dyeing experiments

Our weather has continued to be hot. I decided to take advantage of it to do some more solar dyeing last Friday. I dyed some yarn and some spinning fiber.

The yarn came out great as you can see from the picture. I soaked it in vinegar and water, added color, wrapped them in plastic wrap, and laid them out in the sun to bake all afternoon. Once rinsed out, I hung them in the bathtub to drip.

The two skeins on the left are Knit Picks superwash sock yarn with nylon. I mixed Easter Egg colors up in three jars and dipped a portion of each skein into a jar. I left some white in between so the colors wouldn't mix. Superwash wool really does make intense color! One is dyed with bright blue, green, and an egg yolk yellow. The other is a lemon yellow, hot pink, and a purple that split a bit.

Top right is Knit Picks merino laceweight dyed with pink, blue, green, and purple. I used a measuring cup to pour each color onto the yarn. The colors aren't as intense as the superwash. One of the colors I used split a little.

At bottom right is Knit Picks gloss, a silk and wool blend. I dyed it with red, orange, and brown. I was trying to make a autumny-leaf-turning color. I'm happy with the way it turned out. It may become another Cascading Leaf shawl.

I also pulled out a skein of laceweight from the dyeing workshop. The colors weren't strong enough to suit me so I added more green and purple. I'm much happier with it now. I've learned to have a heavier hand with color. When it dries it loses some of its intensity.

The spinning fiber didn't turn out as well as I'd hoped. I was experimenting with the colors I had left from dyeing the yarn. Some experiments were more successful than others.

I never thought I'd care for dyeing yarn and fiber. This is my third go at it and I like it more each time. If anything, I am beginning to feel constrained with the color limitations of Easter Egg dye. I'd like to do more subtle and different colors than it allows. Since I don't want to use any of the really toxic dyes out there, I may have to shop for some Wilton's icing colors. Just call me the color freak! LOL!

Pookie decided he needed to be in the pictures. He has grown so much! I call him my little bear cub. He has yet to grow into his big feet. I tried taking a picture of him both with and without the flash. This was the best I could do. It's hard to get a good picture of a black cat.


Sarah said...

The kitty says pure black is the best natural color you can get....
Those skeins look great!

Sarah said...

Also, have you decided to get an etsy shop yet? I'll link it on my blog if you do.

Alpaca Granny said...

I love reading about folks' dyeing processes. I've never put fiber in the sun to set the color. You have inspired me to try.