Sunday, 30 March 2008

Yarn Dying

So this afternoon I tried out the Procion Dyes (fibre-reactive) I bought with my birthday money. I had two skeins of sock yarn (75% blue-faced Leicester, 25% nylon) and 8 colours to play with.

I'd heard that black was hard to do but had an idea of doing a black/purple/pink yarn in my head, so decided to go for it.

So first you soak the yarn in water with the appropriate amounts of salt and fixer. I used citric acid as it smells much less than vinegar.


After 45 minutes you take the yarn out and squeeze out the excess water. The damper you leave it the more the dyes will bleed.

While it was soaking I made up my dye solutions. I worked out I needed about 500ml of dye in total for each skein, but had lots left over. I made up 200ml of each colour, slightly stronger than suggested as my measuring spoons didn't go small enough. So my black was a bit stronger than 2% and the others were a bit stronger than 1%. For the black/purple/pink yarn I laid it out on a bin-liner to give myself enough space to get the colours right and applied the dye there.


Then I put the skein into an oven-dish and cooked at 140 degrees C for 30 minutes.


I seem to have forgotten to take a photo of my second attempt, which is blue and green. I used the pure blue and green, and then darkened 2nd batches with the black and made it much more random and variegated. It should come out almost semi-solid. We'll see! The skeins are drying in the airing cupboard over night.

No comments: