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Experimenting with Yarn Dyeing Techniques

Brandon was very disappointed in my first hand-dyeing experiment because he had bought me dying supplies and yarn to dye for Christmas! Well, I ruined his plans ... again. If anyone knows us well, they'll have heard how he's had to deal with this many times during the course of our relationship. I end up buying for myself something that he was planning on getting me. I've had to stop buying things for myself about a month before Christmas, but I didn't think this was on his radar. I still had lots of fun dying the present yarn with the included Kool-Aid branded drink mixes I opened on Christmas.


Dip Dying

First, I tried dip dying for real with superfine baby alpaca. I first made a red dye mix and dipped that until it was clear with the help of my youngest child. Then, I made the purple dye mix, slipped the zip-tie handle over to the red side, and dipped the undyed side until the water went clear. One hank was pure white, and one was slightly gray. The gray hank ended up having a richer color when overdyed. These pictures are really over-saturated, but you can kind of tell how one is slightly darker than the other.

Dip dyed yarn looks so beautiful twisted into a hank, but next time, I'm going to pick less contrasty colors. The dramatically striped look is just not my thing. I'll post the finished product once I've actually finished it. (It's more than 50% done only 6 months into 2022... I'll finish it eventually)



Liquid Kool-Aid & Dyeing yarn balls

He also got me 2 balls of yarn of baby alpaca and wool blend. Since I also got some liquid Kool-Aid drink mix for Christmas, I decided to see how it is different than powder. Turns out, it works just fine. I added the rest of my blue food coloring to get the color I wanted.


Since I got 2 balls of yarn, and I didn't want to unravel it and make it into a hank first, I experimented with dying it while in ball form. I was worried it wouldn't dry very well so I unraveled one ball and put it into hank form to rinse and dry it. That was a huge pain in the butt so I left the second ball alone. Turns out, it dried just fine with a whole lot less effort. Leaving it in ball form made a beautiful gradient with darker on the outside and paler on the inside. I'm excited to see how it looks, but I haven't yet knitted it up yet.


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