Monday, January 24, 2011

Make It Mondays! KoolAid Dye Tutorial and GIVEAWAY!!!

Okay, you've been to Resweater or your local thrift store and have purchased/felted a lovely wool sweater. Why don't you try handcrafting some projects? And, don't settle for boring, monotone yarn/threads....dye your own instead!

I often purchase wool tapestry yarns at the thrift store, usually not paying more that 75 cents for a ten to thirty yard skein. A lot cheaper than your yarn shoppe skein! But, when I dye them, they look so lovely in a felted wool project.

While commerical dyes are available and I use them often, KoolAid is an expensive, convenient dye for the novice dye crafter. So, raid your cabinet and pick out interesting colors. You'll also need the following additional supplies:
White Vinegar
Glass bowl and lid (I use an old Pyrex dish/lid and use this ONLY for dye projects)
Recycled wool yarns, threads (or other natural fibers)
Gloves, masks optional (but I do strongly recommend masks/gloves for children, as even KoolAid powder is not good for the lungs)

Step 1: Soak your yarns in vinegar water in the sink for approx. 5 minutes. (1/4 C. vinegar to a gallon of water...aprox.)

Step 2: While your yarn is soaking, heat to almost boiling a couple of quarts of water with an additional 1/4 C vinegar. Vinegar is the mordant for your dye, meaning it will keep the dye in the fiber.

Step 3: Place your wet yarn in your glass dish and sprinkle on the KoolAid powder. You don't need to cover all of the yarn...diffusion will do it's job when you add the hot vinegar/water. :) If you have more yarn, then place a second layer, along with more KoolAid powder. Kind of like making a fiber lasagna...LOL.

Step 4: Pour the hot water over the yarn until the yarn is covered with water. DO NOT STIR!!! If you do, you'll get muddy colored yarn. Cover the glass bowl immediately and let the hot water and steam do it's thing. Don't be tempted to peek!

Step 5: After the water is clear (that's why I like to use a clear glass bowl/dish) then pour off the clear water into the sink and thoroughly rinse your newly dyed yarn. I like to use a fiber rinse/conditioner product at this point to get rid of any residual vinegar odor, but this is not necessary.

Step 6: Let the yarn dry and then roll it into a ball, ready for your next project. These yarns look beautiful in a bowl on your coffee table also....while you're awaiting inspiration for that "special" project. EnJOY!

Now, a giveaway! If you do all three of the following:
1. Become a follower of my blog and comment on this tutorial or another post
2. "Like" our Facebook page at Everything but the Oink
3. Forward this tutorial to at least three people.
Then you will be entered into a drawing for two skeins of the tutorial yarn. :) The drawing will be next Monday and the winner's name will be posted on the blog.


  1. 1. I'm a follower and am commenting.
    2. I like your Facebook.
    3. I forwarded the tutorial to three people.
    That yarn is really pretty!

  2. Thanks Kendall! Feel free to come by for another dye day anytime. :)

  3. I've asked three friends about coming to the class - still waiting on one answer (two can't make it). I've shared your blog on both of my facebook pages - does that count as forwarding this to three people?

    Got one and two done too. :-)

  4. Anne, that is awesome. Thanks for spreading the word! Would 4-6 on Sunday work out for you, instead of the earlier time? Adrianna is having a friend visit from Oregon this weekend and I hadn't realized that I need to get her back to the train station earlier on Sunday. If 4-6 doesn't work for you, I can arrange another ride to the train.

  5. 4-6 will be fine. Get that girl to the train! :-)

  6. Thanks so much for being flexible. See you then!