I have always wanted to dye my own roving (mostly because of the Twisted Sisters Sock Book!!), but wanted it to be something the children and I could do together – something safe, easy, and non-toxic.Â So, when I was pregnant with my son, the girls and I dyed 2 lbs of white Brown Sheep mill end roving (super economical!) with Easter egg dye bought at 75% off after Easter.Â Â Â The needed ingredients are food-safe dye, vinegar and water.
We followed this Kathryn Ivy tutorial, using spray bottles, brushesÂ and spoons to experiment with different patterns of adding the dye to the roving. Â We worked outside, putting down lots of newpaper,Â so we could make a huge mess, and have fun.Â The girls had a blast squirting different patterns into the white roving, and were surprised at seeing the final results after it the roving was steamed, rinsed, and hung to dry.
It takes a LOT ofÂ very concentrated dye to get the vibrant colors in the tutorial, and mine came out very pastel (as you can see).Â Â It spun up nicely (you can tell this is some early spinning, however – it’s pretty uneven), but after we set the twist (just singles), the hanks have just been hanging out in my yarn dresser, because I haven’t been much in the mood for pastels.Â With the wave of friends/family having babies the last several months, now is a perfect time to crack into that oh-so-pastel yarn!
So far, I’m really enjoying knitting with it, and when it’s all used up, I think we’ll try it again, but with more concentrated dye for more vibrant colors.Â Who knows, maybe Little Hen will be old enough to spin some up herself by then.Â 🙂
If you’ve tried your hand at home-dying fiber, I’d love to hear about it and any advice you can offer.Â If you’ve posted about it on your blog, I’d love to share the link.Â Thanks!
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8 thoughts on “Egg-dyed yarns”
Greetings. The yarn is just beautiful. What lovely shades you have there. Melanie Falick’s book on Kid’s knitting dye’s yarn with crayons. You get really vibrant colors and it’s non-toxic and safe.
This reminds me of the koolaid brown sheep yarn I dyed a horrid bright blue (berry blue color) back at Grinnell. I think that yarn is still hidden away somewhere in my attic, or at my parents’ house.
I did dig out a giant box of homespun and am now using it to make a gorgeous, lacy shawl as my hands allow (the wool is too rough for my skin sometimes).
I love this idea for children with the food-safe Easter egg dye! What a great idea for kid-friendly, safe projects for dying yarns. Do you think the dye would work with fabric, too? I’m “dyeing” to try it! 🙂
Hello! My friend Sara does a lot of spinning and natural dyeing as well. Thought you might like to see her blog, she has a link on the left specifically for sheep/wool/spinning… http://farmama.typepad.com/
I have your blog bookmarked and it took me until today to figure out that it was always bringing me to same post, so I thought there was never anything new. But now I will be sure to check back often!
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