Monday, April 5, 2010

Running out, it happens/ Dyeing Yarn

Hooking along on my Vogue rug I had begun to use a hank of wool I had dyed back in the ice age when I was teaching myself to dye yarn. This teaching consists of making a kajillion mistakes and continuing to soldier on.

This hank of wool had a colour scheme that appeared and disappeared into its background as I hooked it into poker chips, and as I'm hooking more and more on this rug I see that as a theme that is emerging. This rabbity quality, colour disappearing into a hole/whole... I like it.

I needed more yarn and I like to use thicker yarns to hook with and if I whip I like to use finer ones.
I remembered I had dismembered a partially constructed afghan to procure the first hank. And talk about keeping things until they are useful; I had made the afghan squares from a sweater I had knit and didn't like about 33 years ago. I still had some squares for two reasons, I couldn't believe at one time I could crochet and I just like to look at their chunky business from time to time.

Yesterday I got down to a scant foot of yarn left so I dug out two squares and undid them. I tied them up in two places to insure they were easy to wind up after dyeing (you cannot believe the mischief wool will get into if you don't handcuff it, what a rogue) and followed the method below with proc chem turquoise, majic carpet red violet and majic carpet yellow.

Dyeing Yarn

I like to use the electric frying pan for this.

Make sure your wool is arranged in skein and is loosely tied in four points. Wet it.

Make three to six colours of dye in jars, use 1/2 cup of water, more if you skein is big, or thick wool.

Lay your wool in the frying pan, try to get it as much of it in contact with the bottom of the pan as you can. DO NOT ADD WATER.

Turn on your pan.

Pour the first colour over the wool in a cross. Wait for this colour to mostly take up

Pour the next colour in a cross beside the first cross.

Work in this pattern adding all colours one at a time. DO NOT STIR. You can flip over if you wish to inspect for undyed parts and redo them using the colour in that area

Heat until all colour is gone from the dye bath.



  1. What medium are you using to hook your pattern on? linen, burlap, monks cloth?

  2. Hi Jacque,
    Thanks for asking. I always use Micarelli linen. It works for all cuts and when I say all I mean all, everything from sock weight yarn to #32 cut, prodding and the like.
    Why were you wondering?

  3. I am new to hooking this past year and am working in primitive style, #8 cut only so far. I am self teaching... lol and your work is so fine. I have used burlap and monks cloth, but not linen.. guess I'll try it with my next project.

    Thanks for getting back to me.

  4. Jacque,
    Congratulations on becoming a hooker.
    I am also a wide hooker with only the occasional foray into narrow. But I do make some realistic rugs that might make you think they are fine. Honestly I have to say I'll use any cut if it is the right colour ! If you have any question on your self teach journey ask away. BTW a #32 cut is 4 times the width of number eight!!
    Have a wonderful day!