Yarn dyeing is nothing more than adding color to the yarn that has been used to create a garment or item, or adding color to yarn that will soon be used in knitting or crocheting projects. While industrial yarn dyeing takes place before the product is ever sold, many persons like to add their own unique touch of color as well. Here are some examples of different techniques for yarn dyeing that can be done at home.
One of the basics of dyeing yarn is using what you have around the house. By looking around, you may find that you have some egg dye left over from Easter. If so, then you have the perfect medium to add color to your yarn. Using the dyeing process outlined for the Easter egg dyes — many include the use of clear vinegar — prepare the dyeing mixture in a pot or pan large enough to accommodate the yarn you wish to dye.
Before placing the yarn into the pan, make sure to don a pair of rubber gloves. While yarn dyeing, the goal is to add color to the yarn, not to your hands. Immerse the yarn into the dye completely. Instead of allowing it to set for several minutes, make sure that you move the yarn around, allowing all the fiber to be coated with the dye. Wring it out at least twice and immerse it again for several minutes. Allow the yarn to dry on old newspaper outside, then run it through cold water to make sure the dye content is fast and you have the shade that you want. Repeat the process as needed to get the hue you desire.
Using a tea rinse is another way to engage in yarn dyeing. Brew very strong tea and place in your pot or pan. Allow the tea to cool to room temperature, then immerse the yarn in the tea concentrate. Allow it so steep for several minutes, then wring it out and allow it to dry. Yard dyed with tea has the bonus of carrying a pleasing aroma.
Dyeing yarn with commercial dyes is also an option. Select the color you want and make sure to follow the directions on the package to the letter. As with all processes for yarn dyeing, make sure you protect your hands. Commercial dyes come in a wide array of colors, so you will easily be able to find the shade you like.
While trying one of these ideas for yarn dyeing, you may decide to try for a mix of colors. For example, you may choose to dip sections of the yarn in the dye instead of immersing it. This can allow you to create color schemes involving as many colors as you like. Keep in mind that yarn dyeing can be a messy process, but the end result can be worth all the time and trouble.