Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Yarn Dyeing Saturday!

A group of friends and I got together at one of our houses on Saturday to play with Kool-Aid and yarn.  I've had a lifetime of staining stuff with things like Kool-Aid, so I was really intrigued to see what happened when you spill it all over something on purpose!

First of all, you need yarn made from animal fiber.  It's impossible to dye cotton yarn in your own home.  No matter how long you soak it, the Kool-Aid just won't take.  I used Knitpicks "Bare" from their catalog.  It's 100% worsted-weight wool.

First, the soaking.  We all had brought dutch oven pots, and the yarn had to soak in lukewarm water for at least 20 minutes.  (We ended up going outside on Kristina's deck and enjoying the surprise summer weather, we kind of forgot for a bit that there was yarn soaking.  No harm, no foul.)

Then, the process of adding the Kool-Aid.  I added the powder directly to the pot....if I ever did this again I would make the dye first and then add the yarn.  Oh well, I do like the variegated version that I ended up with, which took a whopping THIRTEEN packets of Kool-Aid!

Then it's off to drain it, making it look like the worst spaghetti ever!

Someone had taken a picture of all the used Kool-Aid packets....it was an impressive sight!  Unfortunately, it wasn't me.  Kristina's kitchen smelled like fruity Kool-Aid and wet wool.  BTW...wet wool stinks.  But the Kool-Aid is rather nice.

Here's the end result, coming out of the pot.  That's my friend Kim next to me, she is dyeing hers green.  Green is her signature color by the way, and mine in case you couldn't tell, is purple.

All of our yarns on the drying rack on the deck.  (thank goodness for that nice "summer" weather!)  Danielle went for a bright blue, and Kristina and Kim also made some variegated on the bottom rack, using a turkey baster to distribute the different flavors/colors of Kool-Aid.

The yarn came home with me, still wet and tied in a plastic grocery sack.  I hung it on a hanger and let it finish drying on the shower rod in the bathroom.  For two days, my bathroom smelled faintly of grape Kool-Aid.  And now that it is wound up, it still smells like Kool-Aid and probably always will.

The finished product.  Gorgeous.  :)

Now, what do I plan on doing with this yarn?  I'm thinking the Arroyo Shawl.  For myself, of course!

Thanks for a fun day, ladies!

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