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Quick, Fun Dyeing for Beginners:

Creative Variations


Painted Yarn

Soak yarn in lukewarm water with a dab of detergent.

Squeeze out excess water and lay the yarn on a sheet of plastic wrap.

Dilute dyes in as little water as possible, which will minimize color bleeding. Add a few drops of white vinegar.

Take a paintbrush or sponge and dab dye onto different areas of the yarn. Always be sure to leave a small amount of white space, which will let the colors bleed without discoloring too much. You can also use a small spoon and drip the dyes onto the yarn.

Wipe stray dye drips off the plastic wrap, then seal the plastic wrap over the yarn. You can use additional wrap if necessary to make it airtight.

Keep yarn in a warm place for one to two days. Rinse and dry as normal.


Gradation Dyeing - Technique 1

This technique produces a lovely graded color effect on your skein.

Instead of dropping the entire skein into the dye pot, dip only a small portion.

Wait a few seconds, then lower the skein deeper.

Proceed this way until you've immersed the entire skein into the dye pot.

Then proceed as you would normally.


Gradation Dyeing - Technique 2

This technique is appropriate for dyeing several skeins of yarn at once. It produces multiple skeins on a similar color scheme but with varying depths of color saturation.

Place all yarn in the dye pot with one package of dissolved dye. Let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove one skein, then add two more packages of dye.

Let simmer for another 10 minutes, then remove the next skein.


     Hand-dyed yarns from Ellen's 1/2-Pint Farm
Hand-painted yarns from Ellen's 1/2-Pint Farm



Additional Resources
arrow Introduction to Natural Dyeing

arrow Dyeing for Beginners

arrow Gallery of Kool Aid-Dyed Yarns

arrow Reading List

arrow Barbara M. Harris Pruitt's Kool-Aid Dye Color Chart

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