Thursday, September 09, 2004

Adventures in Overdyeing

I've had the Tangled Garden sock pattern from Knitty printed out for a couple of weeks. The pattern calls for buying white sock yarn and dyeing with Kool-Aid. My stash included several partial balls of variegated and printed sock yarn so I decided to use those.

To dye I first skeined all the yarn then soaked it in hot water with a generous splash of vinegar. In a pot I combined hot water, Wilton's Christmas Red Paste Food Coloring (50 cents in the clearance aisle at Walmart) plus a packet of Black Cherry Kool-Aid. I also added some salt and vinegar. I simmered the yarn for a few minutes until the dye exhausted and let it sit until it was cool enough to handle. I rinsed and hung it out to dry.

The tangled mess above is a sample of the BEFORE yarn. The ball next to it is the AFTER version. All the yarns had white as a major component but varied in color and fiber content. My resulting balls are all different but I think similar enough to make some interestingly eclectic socks. I'm combining them with an olive green gleaned from the sale bin of a LYS.

I like the contrast I'm getting so far. Alas, along with knitting backward, my other knitting foible is that I knit very L-0-0-S-E-L-Y. The pattern specifies a gauge of 9 st/in. on size US 1 needles. I'm using US 0 needles and have gotten 7 st/in. I don't have a set of DPNs that are smaller so I guess I'll be doing some significant reworking of the pattern's 24 stitch repeat. But then I just hate blindly following instructions, don't you?

AND the cat has been redeemed. My purse is a Vera Bradley knockoff that went through the washing machine just fine. I did let poor Murder back in the house. Good thing because the tail end of Hurricane Frances is still dumping rain on us.


Amie said...

Where in MD are you, Molly? If you're near the middle, send me an e-mail to

We meet the first Monday of the month in Columbia, and we'd love to have you join us!

Lauren said...

Hi Molly! I saw your blog on Mid-Atlantic Knitters, and wanted to welcome you! I love to see other peoples' blogs, and I have been doing a lot of Kool-Aid dyeing too! It is so much fun! Yours looks so pretty! Like Amie mentioned above, if you are anywhere near Columbia (that is where I live) it would be great to see you at one of our KnitKnites! :)

um said...

Those socks are going to be gorgeous! Nice dyeing job!!

Carolina said...

Love the colors! Thanks for the info I may have to try this out sometime.

luvs2knit said...

I love the dye job as I have only use Kool-Aid. I need to try the paste. Love the colors.