Adventures in dyeing

Well. So I just finished an excellent sweater design course online from Clare at Sister Mountain (I highly recommend it if you have any interest in designing sweaters. Here's the link but she's currently on maternity leave. - Sister Mountain). And the final project, of course, is to design a sweater. I love color work so I bought 2 colors of Rowan Felted Tweed in Aluminum (a medium gray) and Frozen (a pale lavender). The problem is that I didn't photograph them side by side to look at in black and white. So until I began knitting the swatch, I had no idea how close they were in tonal value. In the balls, they're very different; on the needles, they're identical. So I decided I wanted to try using food color to dye the grey yarn. I love the Chemknits tutorials on braking food coloring (videos here - (79) ChemKnits Tutorials - YouTube) so I bought violet dye which would break into its components of red and blue. But on the grey yarn, it was barely noticeable, probably because I didn't use a high enough concentration of the dye stock. I then bought black, which would also break. The dye stock was 1/4 teaspoon of food coloring in one cup of water. I added one tablespoon of the dye stock to 4 cups of water. Barely noticeable. The next skein, I used 2 tablespoons of dye stock to 4 cups of water. More noticeable but still not enough. So now on my stove, I have a skein in the pot with 4 cups of water, three tablespoons of vinegar, and 1/4 cup of dye stock. I dipped the yarn to break the dye, and turned off the heat to let the skein soak up all the color. When the skein dries, I'll be curious to see if the color is more vivid. And I will, of course, post pictures!

Leave a comment