Category Archives: Dyeing

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Wildcraft Studio School Natural Dye Class

Last summer I was lucky enough to be able to take a day long class at the Wildcraft Studio School about an hour and a half outside of Portland. It was so nice to be able to spend the day outside exploring the woods and gathering plants with a group of other people interested in natural dyes and I came away with some insight into where I can find some of these plants on my own. I'll be talking about dyeing with Blackberry, Sheep Sorrel, Horsetail, Lupine and Fennel on wool yarn and silk fabric.

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Intro to Dyeing with Idyes

Have you ever heard of idyes? Me, neither! Alison, our fearless Knit Picks Director, tells me that they're acid dyes (like the kind Kim uses) but have a combination of cellulosic dye (for plant fibers such as cotton) and protein fiber dye (for animal fibers like silk), allowing you to use them on a large range of natural fiber projects. Inside each envelope is a little water-soluble packet (kind of like those dishwasher detergent nuggets) which you just pop into your washing machine and Vwalaa! You've dyed your own yarn.  I asked her to describe her process and take some photos. Here we go! From Alison: "IDye packets can be a nice option for folks who

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An Intro to Jacquard Dyeing

Have you ever dyed fiber with Jaquard Acid Dyes? Neither have I! Kim here at Knit Picks is a pro, though. So I asked her to do some dyeing and take some photos, and she made it looks so easy!  She has two methods: one uses a crockpot and takes about 3 hours (including cooling time) and one uses a microwave and takes about (wait for it) 4 minutes! Can you believe it? It's totally clean and easy, too. Here's Kim's description of each method: From Kim: "I love to dye fiber! The bolder the better! Here I’m showing you two techniques that I used with wool fiber.

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An Intro to Natural Dyeing

This week we're celebrating the dyeing process. Do you know anything about dyeing yarn? I know nothing. Hannah here at Knit Picks does, though! She even took a class on natural dyeing. So I asked her to show me how to dye yarn from a few blossoms she found in her garden and it was so easy I couldn't believe it. She wrote up the details and I made a video. Click through if you'd like to see! Harvesting: "I picked both Hollyhock (left) and Marigold (right)  flowers from my garden in August.

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An Introduction to Color Theory

Whether you're wanting to create a custom Fair Isle palette or are looking to experiment with dyeing one of our special reserve Bare yarns, it all starts with color. Which is why this week we'll be exploring more about color theory! Color is all around us - it has the ability to affect our mood, it can make us feel energized, it can make us sleepy, it can make us hungry. And yes, it can even affect our knitting and crocheting! Although the study of color is quite complex, getting a good foundation of the basics is all you need to expand the possibilities of your craft.  

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Unlimited color possibilities!

I am a huge fan of color.  I love to mix and match and get some lovely and unique color combinations.  My favorite is to dye Bare Roving and Yarn using the Jacquard Acid Dyes - there are so many colors to choose from! There are also many methods to dyeing. I used the crock pot method for this blog.

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Dyeing with Bare Hare

When Bare Hare arrived to at our office, everyone's first reaction was to uncontrollably "ohhh!" and "ahhhh" over how incredibly squishy and soft it was. Then almost immediately afterward, it seemed as though the same idea popped up for everyone at the same time - Bare Hare is an undyed yarn, which means you can dye it whatever shade is your color of choice! All of us have had previous dyeing experience and so of course, we couldn’t help but jump over to the dyeing section of the Knit Picks website to check out the different dyes and colors. In addition to the Jacquard dyes, we were also drawn to the Earthues and Greener Shades dyes. And because we loved Bare Hare so much, we thought - why not experiment a bit and try out all three different types of dyes? I had been wanted to try out the Greener Shades Dyes, so I opted for the Coral Reef Aqua. Stacey chose Emerald in the Jacquard Dyes and Kerin went with the Earthues natural dyes. Here is the result of our Bare Hare dyeing extravaganza, I love how they turned out!

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Cutch

A partial Earthues Botanical Dye Kit kit found its way to my desk last weekend and I jumped on the chance to dye a little bit of an enormous fleece I bought at last year's Black Sheep Gathering. There was enough cutch left in the packet to dye about 3/4 of a pound of fiber. So, in the pot it went with some Alum as a premordant and then once more into the pot with the powdered cutch for a few hours on a hot stove.

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How to Dye Tonal Yarns

Have you seen our new selection of tonal yarns yet? There are so many reasons to love adding the subtle shifts of color found in tonal yarns into your projects. Tonal yarns are a wonderful way to add the subtle variations of a color to your project without fearing that it will distract from textured stitches, cables, or even lace patterns. Each of our tonal yarns are made up of seven different shades of your favorite colors, which combine together to create complex, monochromatic colorways. Not only do tonal yarns add lots of visual interest when worked up with simple stitches, but they also beautifully highlight intricate stitch patterns.

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Color in Spinning

You’re spinning? Isn’t it just too much fun? Once you are confident with your skills, I know you are going to be happy for years as you feel all sorts of fibers slip through your fingers. But, handspinning isn’t just a tactile experience. Color is a whole other world of spinning. I think it is even more fun because it is a way for you to add your own color preferences to spinning. Color in Spinning by Deb Menz is a large book but Deb’s lessons make working with color completely approachable. The page sizes and quality paper provide a excellent canvas for the large, colorful, detailed photos.

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