Your yarn is ready right? All soaked through, shouldn’t be any dry spots.
The next step is to heat some water. For this skein ( which was only 50 gms of wool) I just filled my tea kettle and heated it to just below a boil. If it boils that’s OK, you can just let it cool off a bit before you use it. I then poured the water into a large bowl, very carefully! Then I sprinkled 2 packets of Kool-Aid Watermelon Cherry into the bowl.
Super secret insider Kool-Aid tip, the color of the liquid in the glass on the packet is the color of the drink, not the color of the Kool-Aid guy.
Stand back a little bit as it fizzles just a little and you don’t want to get splashed. You also don’t want to inhale a bunch of Kool-Aid. Stir gently. It is very helpful to have a white plastic spoon. You can then see the true color of the solution.
Now take your yarn out of the sink and squeeze out some water. I just get it so it is not dripping. It is amazing how much water wool will hold! Then dunk the wool into the dye bath. I try to get it all in quickly as it takes up the dye rapidly. Then I GENTLY swirl it a bit with the spoon. Remember, temperate change plus agitation equals felting. Now just let it sit.
While the yarn is absorbing the dye, admire my lovely vintage linen tea towel from Barbados. It has several rum cocktail recipes on it. And…it’s made in Ireland! LOL. This was another thrift store find. Consider this my thrifty Thursday post for the week since I missed it. I think I bought it at Savers for around $1.50.
After a few minutes…yes that quickly, you can actually watch it happen, the dye will be absorbed into the wool and it will leave behind a cloudy fluid. It should look like this.
Again, the white plastic spoon is helpful because you can see that there is no dye left in the liquid.
The color of the wool is darker when it is wet. If you think it is too light now, it will surely be too light when it is dry. The color you get is determined by the amount of dye, not the amount of water. Again, I use about 3-4 packets for 100 grams of wool.
Now you can either let the yarn sit in the water until it cools off, which is what I usually do, or you can use the spoon to carefully lift the yarn out and set it to drain and cool in the sink. You do not want to rinse it or handle it too much at this stage. Once the yarn is cool I rinse it and set it out to dry. Hopefully if you did a good job in tying the skein your yarn is not too tangled.
After it’s dry, twist into a pretty skein and admire! The yarn has not become a project yet. I was thinking it would make a pretty baby hat.
Seriously, pretty simple right? The work is all in getting the yarn ready.
You can reuse the water to soak your next skein if you are the thrifty sort.
More on Kool-Aid dying in further posts.