Southwest {yarn dyeing recipe}

Southwest is a colorway that I dyed in the crockpot. When I pulled it out of the pot, I thought I had ruined my yarn. With a minor tweak, I went from thinking it was horrendous to beautiful. Yay!
 

I am sharing my yarn dyeing recipe {along with the tragedy} with you today. Maybe you can learn from my experience and have the courage to experiment with dyeing your own yarn.

 

 

Here's how I dyed the wool:

 

I used about 315 yards of Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool, presoaked and tied. (Remember, details on the typical crock pot dying method can be found here.)

 

Dye:

Orange:

.5 package Mandarin Orange Kool-Aid mix

Mixed with a tiny glug of vinegar and enough hot water to equal 1 cup of liquid
 

 

Blue:

Bulging 1/4 teaspoon Royal Blue Wilton's icing colors

Mixed with a tiny glug of vinegar and enough hot water to equal 1 cup of liquid

 

Green:

Bulging 1/4 teaspoon Kelly Green Wilton's icing colors

Mixed with a tiny glug of vinegar and enough hot water to equal 1 cup of liquid

 

Yarn:

 

I piled the yarn into the crockpot with enough water to barely reach the the top of the yarn. I poured the orange dye into the center of the crockpot, all in one small spot. The green and the blue were poured in semicirles- half in one quadrant of the crockpot, the other half in the quadrant on the opposite side. You can look at the diagram below for a little visual help. The blue and green stayed pretty much inside the black lines.

 

 

 

I heated it on low heat for around 6 hours, taking care that the water did not boil. DON'T lift the lid. Then I turned the crock pot off and left it until it was completely cooled.
 

The next morning I took the yarn out of the water to find a horrendous, ugly mess! The blue and green look fine, but the orange just looked like mud. I really wish I had taken a picture so that I could share with you just how awful it looked! I just knew there was nothing that I would knit with this yarn. There was only one thing to do…
 

Experiment!
 

I had to see if I could save this yarn.

 

 

I made more orange dye:

 

1 package Mandarin Orange Kool-Aid mix

Mixed with a tiny glug of vinegar and enough hot water to equal 1 cup of liquid

 

 

I layed plastic wrap out on my dining room table in a circle big enough for my yarn (it was still tied from the first dyeing). I stretched my circle of yarn out on it. I used my turkey baster (giant syringe) to put more orange dye on top of all the spots that were already the gross-not-really-orange color.
 

Once all the dye mix had been added to the yarn, I wrapped the plastic wrap over the yarn. Now that I had a big loop of yarn wrapped completely in plastic wrap, I carefully layed and folded the yarn into a casserole dish that was small enough to fit into my microwave.
 

I put the dish in the microwave and heated on high for 2 minutes. Then let the yarn sit for 2 minutes. Then I heated it on high for 2 more minutes. I left the dish in the microwave for an hour or two. When it was cooler, I took it out of the microwave, and then let it sit in the dish until it was completely cool.
 

Several hours later I went in to unwrap the yarn.
 

I was prepared for it to still be ugly.

 

 

 

It was gorgeous!!
 

I was so pleasantly surprised and thrilled! And just look at how gorgeous these little longies and matching hat were! {Aww!}

 

I can't wait to try to replicate this yarn~ but this time all in one dyeing!

 

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