08 November 2013

Answers to Tie-dye Judy's question

Wow! I have never tried dyeing wool because I thought it had to be boiled... now that I know it can be done like silk, I might just have to give it a try! I found a gal not too far away who raises llamas and sells her yarn... can't wait to see what you do with yours! BTW, did you have to use anything after to soften the yarn, or did it stay fairly soft? 

The only difference is instead of soda ash I use 1 cup vinegar (white) to a gallon of water for a mordant. The dye is a ACID dye which will last a year (or more) mixed in bottles so it is so easy to grab and go. I had this mixed, heated in the microwave on half power for 10 minutes. I covered with plastic wrap the punched about 10 slits with a sharp knife. All these are must does. Mordant, acid dye, microwave, half power for 10 minutes (that's for a skein) and punched slits in the plastic wrap or you'll burn your material (ask me how I know). I use a dedicated corning ware pot and then I can go directly from the microwave to the sink and rinse in cold water. Squeeze and rinse til water is clear then squeeze out and hang to dry. I hang them in the shower. It takes two days to dry thoroughly. I use a swift to roll into balls. This is the one I bought. Didn't think I would use it much but I'm actually surprised how often I do use it - four times this month. It breaks down into a thin box and you can just slip it on a shelf.
The yarn did stay soft but still smells a bit. I am going to knit a boiled wool (felted) hand bag and THEN I will wash it in Woolite.
Wool dye (acid) does have to reach boiling but the microwave can do it in 10 minutes. The acid dye must be mixed with boiling water as well. Boil in- boil out.

Easily fits in box for easy storage

Sets up in less than a minute

I will be using the two strands together to knit the felted bag


  1. ohhhh this is interesting!! I would like you to join us on my blog's Off the Wall Friday where Fiber artists link up. This is my favorite palette btw!

  2. I like the yarn winder! Much nicer than the big ones. And I can't wait to see the felted bag when you finish it, and I'm hoping for a tute on it as well (pretty please?) as I have never done any felting!

  3. What a great colors. And now time for knitting?

  4. great tool,I will dye fabric and yarn next week,I'll have to have it.
    Marion from Bavaria

  5. Looking forward to seeing this completed. And thanks for the detailed pics of the swift. I'm thinking I could even make one. Ermmm. Someday?


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