Dyeing to Spin!

~Fun, colorful times at spinning class! I’ve been doing quite a bit of dying since learning last March; however, I’ve never microwave dyed wool which we did yesterday. Margaret stressed that you should have a dye microwave and not use your food one. You don’t want any poisonous dye contamination.

We started out with the regular dying in a pot. After the water was added, a dollop of vinegar was added. We used Jacquard Acid Dyes in colors Aztec Gold, Kelly Green, Periwinkle, Fushia, and Spruce. Super yum colors together. The pot was heated until just before the liquid boiled.

The best was the microwave dying since I haven’t tried that. It’s so easy! This works well for bits of fiber you’re going to spin.

Materials:

Jacquard Acid Dyes – make solutions
Water
Vinegar
Glass jars – we used Mason jars
Gloves
Apron
Stick – for pushing down wool

Step 1: Add a bit of fiber to the bottom of a Mason jar. Pour water and then dye solution over the fluff.

Step 2: Pour a bit of vinegar on top.

Step 3:  Use a stick to poke the fiber down into the mixture.


Step 4: Repeat Steps 1 – 3 until jar is almost full. We created layers using different colored dyes.


Step 5: Place in microwave, we left the top uncovered. Heat is needed to set the dye, so the microwave was used as a heat source. To keep the yarn from “exploding” when steam tries to escape, the warming was done in tiny increments:

  • Microwave on medium for 1 minute
  • Cool for one minute, leaving jars in microwave with door shut
  • Repeat about 5 times

Remove jars and allow to cool before removing fiber. Different dyes adhere better at different temperatures.


Step 6: Remove fiber and place on paper towels to drain. Using cold water, rinse the fibers until the water runs clear. Lay out the fiber to dry. Spin! Save and dry the paper towels to use in a paper craft activity.