Aren’t these yarns gorgeous? I’ve seen many different techniques on dying yarn and they all involve heat. Well, you can brew ice tea outside in the sun so how about “brewing” some colorful yarn in the sun? Here’s how!
Ice cream cones, fudgesicles, popsicles, push-ups, kool-aid….the sweet summer treats I loved as a kid. I also remember sporting a lovely kool aid mustache along with a popsicle stained t-shirt. Ah, such wonderful memories!
I haven’t sported the cool, red mustache in quite a few years, but I do love all those gorgeous, saturated colors of kid treats….don’t you? Rather than consuming colorful goodies, why don’t we make some? Look what I did with just some jars, 100% wool yarn, cold water, vinegar, and unsweetened kool aid….
Sun Dying Yarn With Kool-Aid
Step 1: You need a protein fiber based yarn. I used 100% wool that is not treated to be a superwash wool. You also need unsweetened Kool-Aid in your choice of colors. Optional: distilled white vinegar.
Step 2: Wind your yarn into an open hank (mine are about 20 yards of wool). Loosely tie your hanks in 3 places with a colorfast yarn or string.
Step 3: Place your tied yarn hanks in a basin of water for 15-20 minutes to soak. (You will notice that dry yarn floats so soaking the yarn first helps to ensure that the dye is evenly distributed throughout the yarn….just like you pre-soak t-shirts before tie-dying them)
Step 4: If you are dying mini skeins like myself, put 1 cup of cool water in a jar along with 1 unsweetened packet of Kool-Aid (it dissolves quickly). I added 1 Tbsp of white vinegar to each jar as well to help set the color but Kool Aid is fairly acidic so the vinegar may not be necessary. If you are dying larger hanks of yarn I would use one cup water, 1 packet Kool-Aid and 1 Tbsp vinegar for every 20 yards of yarn you are dying.
Step 5: Place your yarn hanks in the prepared jars of dye and set outside in a nice sunny spot. Leave for 2-4 hours (depending on how sunny and warm it is).
Step 6: You know your yarn is done with you lift it out and all the color is in the yarn with little or none left in the jar.
Step 7: These are the “dye” jars after the yarn hanks have been removed. See how there is very little color left in each one?
Step 8: Hang your yarn hanks up to dry.
Step 9: Twist your dried yarn into skeins!
This was so easy and fun! I wonder if it is possible to make some sun dyed yarn that is multi-colored? What do you think? Which color is your favorite? If you like these here are the flavors I used?