For my first post in 2012, I decided to try something I had never done before. And, I figured I would document it and post it as a tutorial on here if it worked out well. Well, it certainly did, so here it is... the tutorial for how to Dye yarn with Easter Egg Colors. I hope it helps some of you, and just let me know if you have any questions at all.
100% Wool Yarn--This is extremely important. You have to have some sort of animal fiber; wool, alpaca, or something of that type. I used Patons Classic Wool that I found on sale at Michaels and it seemed to work fine :) Looks like this:
Easter egg colors--You can get them for super cheap the day after Easter, so pick up a bunch then. I just happened to have a spare box lying around. You might be able to find them at the Dollar Store right now if you don't have a pack.
2 Chairs--This will make sense in a second
2 or 3 small containers
Scrap acrylic or cotton yarn
First, you need to wind your yarn into a hank. It will not work if your yarn is in skein form or ball form. This is because the yarn in the center of the skein or ball is too "protected" by the outermost layers of yarn. You can wind your yarn into a hank by putting two chairs back to back a few feet away from each other and winding your yarn around them.
Next, you need to use scrap acrylic or cotton yarn to secure your hank so it doesn't tangle in the dying process. You will use acrylic or cotton because it won't absorb the dye color, so it will be easy to find later.
Now, prepare your water vinegar solution. Depending on how much yarn you have, you may need to add more or less vinegar. I think I had about 210 yards, so you can sort of gauge it off that. If you can't figure this out, don't stress. It isn't an exact science. I used 1 cup vinegar and about 6 cups water. Once you have that in a bowl large enough to hold your yarn, go ahead and dunk your yarn into your mixture. It will float initially, just push it down into the water/vinegar and wait for it to absorb. Let this sit for about an hour.
Once you have your colors dissolved, you can pour them over your yarn! Pour them any way you choose, they will look lovely every single time.
(For the observant reader: Yes, my water is clear in this pic, indicating this was after I cooked it. I just forgot to take a pic of the pouring of the colors)
Then, microwave! Put your yarn bowl in for 2 minutes, then let it set for 2 minutes. Continue this until the water your yarn is in is completely clear. Totally clear. Not-a-stitch-of-dye-in-there clear.
Then, let it sit while you fill up your sink with hot water.
The reason you need it hot is because the yarn is hot right now. If you put it in cold water, your yarn would felt (because, remember, it's wool!), and all your work would go down the drain. Literally.
Dump your yarn in and gently swoosh it around to get all the vinegar out. (But not too much! Friction + Hot water + wool = Nightmare) Now lay a towel out on your counter and lay your hank on top (you may need to let it drip over the sink before you do this). Then, fold the excess towel over top and gently press the water out.