Hand Knitting Yarns

Dye Your Own Wool

Dye Your Own Wool
Dye your own wool. Taken from www.hjsstudio.com/mittens.html
Kool-Aid can be used to dye various kinds of clean wool or mostly wool content.
Make sure the wool is clean. Pre-soak the fiber for at least half an hour in HOT water with a little dish-soap (Dawn works well). Rinse well and squeeze out extra water.
The yarn needs to be a WOOL content (mostly wool works best) and it helps to wear rubber gloves!

Stove-Top Method
1-2 pkg. unsweetened Kool-Aid for a 3-6 ounce skein of wool or wool-blend.

1 pot that will hold approximately 6-8 cups of water.
1 c. of white vinegar. Vinegar helps fix the color to the fiber.

-Put the pot on the stove, (stainless steel or unchipped enamal pot – don’t use aluminum) with the 6-8 cups water, and add Kool-Aid and vinegar. Stir until dissolved.

-Turn on the heat and add wool, yarn, or even some wool or cotton socks. -Bring heat to simmer stage – usually takes ten minutes. Watch the color disappear from the pot in about 45 minutes – the water in the pot will end up clear. Some colors require additional time.

-You can use a certain color of Kool-Aid and as it is dyeing in the pot, open a package of blue or purple Kool-Aid, and sprinkle it on the top of the wool that is exposed. You don’t have to completely cover the yarn with water if you want to do this. Have fun with it!

-Once the color is gone from the water, use a tongs to remove the wool, and place in a sink of cold water.

-Remove wool and gently squeeze excess water from skeins, now rinse in warm soapy water, squeeze and hang to dry. You can also place the skein in a nylon-stocking sock, tie the end shut and place in dryer!

Microwaving Method
This is so much easier to do for small amounts of wool! For the wool used in the hat below, the Pinks were done with the dye bath method, but the yellows and blue/green were done with the microwave method.

– Simply: soak the wool in a bowl with a squirt of dish soap liquid and hot water, for 1/2 hour.

– Take 2 plastic cups, and place in each: 1 tbsp. vinegar and 1 tbsp. of water. Add 1 pkg. of unsweetened Kool-Aid. Stir. This will dye about 2 oz. of wool. I used our turkey baster, but an eyedropper will work too. Place the wool on a sheet of plastic wrap (to be used later to wrap wool in)

– Suck the dye into the baster and gently pour on various patches of the wool. I dyed one end blue and one end green.

– Now wrap the plastic wrap around the wool, and place this in a glass bowl.

– Microwave on high for 3 minutes (any liquid you see in the bowl or wrap should be clear now).