Saturday, October 27, 2012

Birthday Dye Party

Today with my turning 50 we are celebrating with a birthday Dye Party!

Gradient Dye Party 10-27-2012

There are many methods of working long color changing yarns. We are going to work on one of the easier methods. Many involve a great deal of prep work and end up with massive snarls of yarn mess if you don't have good prep. Even with the best of prep you can still end up with a mess on your hands.

So we are going with a simple to prep, easy to understand method. Taking 50 yard increment skeins we are going to make each a shade different to gradually blend one color into the next. If you were in on our color changing class you pretty much already know how this is done.

Assuming you know the dye basics as you wouldn't be here if you didn't. You should know all about vinegar as a setting solution and how much dye is required for different things.

METHOD #1 Dip Dyeing using only one color:
This is the easiest method and requires a kettle/pot. Put all your well tied up skeins into the dye kettle-turn on. Pull out one immediately and set aside. Every few minutes (more or less so keep checking) remove another one. In the end you will have all different shades of this one color.

METHOD #2 Hand painting using a blend from one color into the next:
This method require hand painting. Give each of your skein a base coat of a light amount of your main color. I do this but sprinkling the smallest amount of color on a fork then whisk it up for a pale base coat.

Then place the skeins out on plastic wrap. Just like in the last class we are going to paint the skeins so that they blend. Lay them out and run the SAME dye over them all making them up with less and less of color #1 as you go. For example painting all skeins across in this manner:

First skein
Using color #1 paint 75% of this color and 25% of color #2

Second skein
Using color #1 paint 50% of this color and 50% of color #2

Third skein
Using color #1 paint 25% of this color and 75% of color #2

.and so on for as long as you like... this is the LEAST you want to do with this method. You can make them longer with different percentages but do not go smaller thinking you will take a solid though to a different solid with just one jump it wont work.

Then when you go to knit them remember everything from our first class and put the methods I taught you there into practice.

What doesn't work...

Making a caked ball and pulling from the center a bit at a time. For instance, pulling an inch and going left, next inch going right, etc till the balls gone and you have two piles of cat yuck. This method makes STRIPES! After all that work of untangling it after carefully dyeing it so that it doesn't cat yuck,,, it cat yucks anyway so steer clear of this method.

Making skeins in one long strand, putting them out and painting each individually a different color. Again this results in stripes unless you do the method #1 above and dip dye it, or #2 above and paint through them all. Still cat yuck and much untangling which I find so not worth the work load required to get the job done.


This photo here shows a yarn which should work. I haven't used the above yet but I fear it will stripe, possibly not but it's not my favorite color so I haven't bothered with it yet.

This one will work it's a paint using Method #2 mostly turquoise as color #1 and a bit of purple and green.... darker as you go.



Another using Method #1 and #2 this will gradually go from black to green... see there on the right, I used only 3 skeins so this might require a great deal of manipulation from the purple/black to the purple and again into the green. There's just not enough play in the yarn. Again I'm not positive as I haven't worked this one.

DD did this one and I think it's going to be swell! It's a large amount of yarn painted from purple/violet through all the blues into the green. There will be a bit of a jag here and there but again yarn manipulation from the last class will bring this one to heel if the painting alone doesn't do it.

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