I mentioned last week that I was taking a yarn dyeing workshop at the Neighborhood Fiber Co’s shop in Baltimore over the weekend so I thought I’d share what I made in class. If you’ve never dyed yarn before it’s not that difficult. I did it a couple of years ago and since I only did it on a small scale it wasn’t overwhelming and since I wasn’t doing multiple colors or effects it didn’t get too messy. If you are interested in yarn dyeing, I suggest taking a class. It makes it much less intimidating and you don’t have to worry about making a mess. I was fortunate enough to have my best friend lead the charge when I wanted to try dying yarn. She had done fabric for a designer so she knew what to do. All I did was buy the yarn and dye materials (If you’re interested in dyeing your own yarn, I’d suggest using acid dyes. I previously purchased these dyes from Dharma Trading Co. and even got the citric acid needed). So when I got to Neighborhood Fiber Co they had this lovely yarn color wheel on the table. You know how much I love a rainbow…and color…and yarn.
We talked a lot about color theory and how they create their highly saturated colors. The workshop was really run by a student from MICA who is majoring in Fiber – who knew that was a degree that existed?! I wish I had gone to an arts school because I think I would’ve been way craftier than I am. Our class was small, only 3 of us and we each picked varying weights of yarn (I chose their studio worsted – I dyed up 2 skeins with 800 yards each for a sweater) and vastly different colors.
Can you guess which one is mine? I’m the one in the middle!
I decided I wanted a pale minty green, to make myself a light sweater for spring. It only took a few hours and they have pre-mixed jugs of their bases for dye but I made this pale green by mixing turquoise, blue and the tiniest drop of yellow and then slowly adding just a little bit to a huge pot of water. It’s kind of amazing to watch it take on the color. It’s not perfectly saturated all around but I love the bits of white and paler green throughout. I’m thinking I’m going to make this pattern with it as a nice piece to throw on over jeans or with a fitted pencil skirt for work. Neighborhood Fiber Co will offer Open Dye Studio hours where you can come and use their facilities and dye for a smaller fee than the class. I might be back again to make up some more unique colors for projects I have in mind in the future.
So have any of you tried dyeing yarn? I kind of love it but know if I start I won’t be able to stop and my stash will just be a bit insane.
8 Replies to “Adventures in Yarn Dyeing”
Holy cow!! This is sooooo unreal!!! I have been ringing your office phone because I wanted to ask you if there is a difference between kettle dying and what I normally buy?!!! How creepy is this that you’re talking about the same thing?*$%!!! Wow! But I’m going to wait until you get better before bombarding you with questions. 🙂
The perks of having me in the building.
Amazing dye job Dana! I thought the neon green was yours but this minty green is a winner. Can’t wait to see how you pair up this up with a sweater pattern.
Welp … you know I’ve tried dyeing! My dye pots have been on timeout but I’m encouraged by your adventures to get them bubbling again.
I knew most folks would assume the brights but I went soft! I’m branching out. And yes, you need to dust off those dye pots!
I will! LOLOL! As a matter of fact, I’m gearing up for President’s Day weekend off. 😀