A Red Day, Ere the Sun Rises!

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As promised, today I dyed up some of that recycled cashmere sweater. I only dyed the yarn from the two sleeves for now. I thought I’d walk through the process of dying them here. I apologize in advance for bad pictures. The lighting in my kitchen is dim and very yellow.

But lets begin!

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I used the microwave method to dye my yarn, but whenever I dye I start out with hot water from the kettle. I find that it helps the dye to dissolve better. You can probably tell that this bowl isn’t quite big enough for all the yarn, but it’s the biggest one we’ve got. It caused some problems though.

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I mixed the dye first and then poured it on the yarn. The dye consisted of about two and a half packets of Tropical Punch Kool-Aid and a few drops of blue food coloring (from the little dropper bottles that normal people use for their food coloring needs). After I poured the dye on, I squished the yarn around a bit to get the color all through, then popped it in the microwave and nuked it for about a minute every 15 minutes or so (or whenever I actually remembered it.)

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From the outside, it looked like that worked. But it was not so…

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Because the yarn was packed in the bowl so tightly, the color didn’t get to all the yarn. So all the yarn that was at the bottom was still blue. I flipped the yarn and added 2 more packets of Tropical Punch. I might add now that the kitchen was starting the smell very interesting. I like the smell of Tropical Punch Kool-Aid. It is one of the better Kool-Aid smells (LOADS better then grape. ew. Have you ever tasted a grape, Kool-Aid?). However, at the same time I was also cooking beef stew in the crock pot and rosemary bread in the oven. The smells are all very nice separately, but together it was getting a little funky.

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When all the dye had exhausted, there were still a few little blue patches in my yarn; which was….frustrating. I’m going to Target: Land of Wonders tomorrow to pick up some more Tropical Punch Kool-Aid to fix the blue spots. I think I’m going to dye the hanks separately as well, so they have room to move around in the bowl. Besides the blue spots, I’m very happy with how the red turned out. It’s not too Ronald McDonald ketchup-ey, but a nice brick color. Hopefully, I’ll fix up those light spots tomorrow and have a nice, finished red to show you.

P.S. Anyone catch the Lord of the Rings quote in the title? I just finished reading Return of the King today.

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