Monday, January 11, 2010

Out of the Couldron

I spent the better part of my morning this morning dyeing up some yarn! Ashton is spending the week at his Grannies and Flynn still has a huge sleep ;)
I documented one of the lots with photos and thought i would post a bit of a tutorial for those new to yarn dyeing :)
The method i have been using is a mixture of two different techniques :)

You will need:
Yarn, vinegar, food colouring, big pot, steamer, gloves, tongs ( preferably silicon so they don't snag the wool), bottles or jars for mixing colour, cloths for wiping up.

1. Get your yarn ready for dyeing by winding it into a skein. Some yarns come already in a skein but the yarn i was using today came in a ball, so i wound it out using my handy swift. (ball in the middle so show difference)
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

2. Next up its time to soak your warn in warm water. ( i added a few drops of green colouring to my sink just because i wanted to make sure i didn't have any white bits in my finished product but this is not necessary)
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

3. After about 15/20 mins its time to take out the yarn and transfer it to a pot of hot water with liberal vinegar poured in ( i used half a bottle)
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

4. Turn the element onto medium and its time to mix up your colours! I wanted to make varying shades of green yarn so i used green and blue food colouring. I started by filling a bottle with half warm water and some more vinegar and a few drops (10ish) or green food colouring.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

5. Using the tongs, lift up sections of the yarn and squeeze the dye directly onto the yarn. Repeat all over the skein.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

6. Then i add significantly more dye to the bottle and top up with a bit more water and vinegar ( this makes a darker shade of the same colour). Repeat step 5 with the new shade, lifting different sections of yarn up.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

7. This time i added more green and a little bit of blue to get a slightly different colour and shade, repeat step 5 again.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

8. After you have finished with the dark colour leave it to stand for 5 or so minutes and then lift up and drain most of the water off and transfer into the steamer.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

9. Cover and steam for about half an hour, turning the yarn over every 5 minutes or so. Once the water runs clear when you lift it up and turn its time to rinse! transfer yarn into the sink and rinse with HOT water, slowly turning down the temperature to cold. because I had used to much colour in this dye lot it took along time for the yarn to rinse clear, in fact i had to add some more vinegar and steam for another 15 minutes or so. This is fine, you jut need to make sure it runs clear of your yarn will leak colour once it is washed.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

10. Ring the rinsed yarn in a towel to take out excess moisture and then hang out to dry :) Once dry i place back on my swift and wind into a ball. I re-wound one of the balls into a skein again ( slightly different length) to show how great the colours look! i always gift hand dyed yarn in a skein as i much prefer how it looks.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

and there you have it! Gorgeous hand dyed yarn!!!!!!!!!!!!! I actually did two other colourways today but as they are for swaps i cant show them for a couple of weeks yet ( but they are AWESOME!)

This green yarn is destined to become an Ishbel shawl for my lovely friend Viv as a personal swap for some cloth napkins and place mats.

9 comments:

Jo's Place said...

oh my goodness Hannah that yarn is divine. I am in LOVE :)

Have you tried the Burrito Method for dyeing your yarn. You don't need to heat it in a pot etc, it's dyed in cool water then wrapped in plastic like a burrito and cooked in the microwave for 5 mins.

Susan L (lily40au) said...

This is absolutely gorgeous ... and it looks so easy. Wow!

Rainbow Child said...

Jo we dont have a microwave :(!!! our blew up a few months ago so not mroe burritos for me hehehehe, but yes thats how i did my first few dye jobs :)

Sally said...

Thanks for sharing how to dye yarn. Your end product is 100% lush. But where did you get your yarn to start with?

Rainbow Child said...

I used white 4ply baby merino for the green from www.thewoolcompany.co.nz :)

Amber said...

I've been wanting to try dyeing for ages! With such a good tutorial I might just have to try it soon...

Briony said...

Thank you for showing me how to dye!! I am eager to give it a go now :)

Kate said...

Yum scrum Hannah. That looks lovely :-)

highwaycottage said...

Hannah, the colour looks great!! It will be lovely. Hope I can start fulfilling my half of the swap soon.