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Old 12-28-2008, 03:18 PM   #1
Marria
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Best Dye for a Beginner?
OK, so I have a couple of skeins of Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool in my stash, and I'd like to try my hand at dying it. I have a couple of questions for you dye experts out there...

What is a good type of dye/brand for a beginner such as myself?

Should I wind the yarn into smaller hanks? There is a LOT of yarn in those skeins (465 yards per skein).
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Old 12-28-2008, 07:38 PM   #2
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I would recommend Koolaid. It's cheap for a first timer (to see if you really like the process - which I'm sure you will), smells great, and is lots of fun to watch!

How much yarn you want to deal with at once partly depends on what you want to knit with it. I dyed about 300 yards in a really large corningware dish in the microwave. It worked fine. Others could probably give you more well-tested advice about "to divide or not to divide."
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Old 12-28-2008, 09:22 PM   #3
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I second Kool-Aid. It smells yummy and is non-toxic of course. Here is my method: I take two chairs and set them as far apart as I can, then wrap the yarn around them and tie off every few inches to help keep it from tangling. Then I soak it in some lukewarm water for about 20 minutes until it is well saturated (pushing/squeezing into the water will get it started). I have a 20 quart stock pot that I fill with a couple of inches of water, then mix the Kool-Aid in regular mason jars. Then I put the jars into the pot and then distribute the yarn in sections into the jars of Kool-Aid. Then I put the pot on the stove and let it come almost to a boil, then turn off the heat and put on the lid. Once it has cooled enough to handle I take out the yarn and rinse with lukewarm water. Squeeze out the excess water and then I just drape mine over one of those wooden clothes racks until it is dry. The colors stay in pretty well, I made a felted bag with yarn dyed this way and the colors stayed pretty much the same. I have done single skeins (Patons Merino) and also joined two skeins to dye at once. I thought the two skeins at once was a bit much yarn to handle, so I prefer to do single skeins and use for small projects.
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Old 12-28-2008, 10:47 PM   #4
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I agree with KCC about tying it off. Do you have a niddy noddy? I made one out of PVC. It's really easy and CHEAP. While I've got my yarn on the NN, I tie it off with kitchen cotton (which I somehow have an extreme abundance of). It always gets a little curly in the corningware, but that's cool. I love wet-thwacking. You know, taking out all that built-up teenage angst on your washing machine with your wet, dyed yarn before hanging it up to dry.
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Old 12-29-2008, 10:14 AM   #5
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THanks for all the information everyone, and thanks for the information on the niddy-noddy too, LadyViolet. I had never even heard of that...

I have read a little about using a crock pot to dye stuff as well. I am thinking about looking for one at a thrift store.

My husband is going to live this, considering he, myself and my teenage stepson live in a small apartment with a tiny kitchen. :D
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Old 12-30-2008, 01:08 AM   #6
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I have been looking at some of the undyed yarns for sale at Elann.com

Is there a particular fiber that takes the kool-aid dye better than others?
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Old 01-03-2009, 05:23 PM   #7
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Natural fibers. It's been a while since I did mine, so I don't remember what I used. I'm thinking BFL or Corriedale. Maybe I should go try to remember...
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