Sunday, January 30, 2011

Skein Then Skein Again!

As part of the ongoing bartering process, a friend spun some of my mohair/wool cloud into nice chunky singles. These singles are gorgeous!! I could use them as-is and knit up a nice chunky hat. But I've never been one to adhere to "leave well enough alone!" Instead, I live by the "off to the dyepots with you" philosophy. 

Wetting the skeins first helps them absorb dye more easily. Also, tie the skeins up in a few spots with cotton string. Tying up the skein helps prevent the yarn from turning into a rat's nest. This is especially useful with mohair because it likes to stick to itself. 

Do the tie-ups BEFORE you wet the skein. Ideally you would tie it up while it is still on your niddy noddy and NOT after you wet it. Working with wet wool is a tad bit harder; working with wet mohair is a pain. A royal pain! Let's just say there's an hour I won't get back...arrggh.

I decided I was going to dye the skeins several colors, so part of the skein went into the roasting pan. I use a roasting pan for dyeing skeins, roving, locks, etc. You can find the roasters on sale cheap at the farm store during the winter holidays. Color number one? Sapphire.

Followed by russet, golden ochre, and pumpkin which gave me some nice oranges and greens, too.
A little drying time by the woodstove and viola!
I plan on plying these singles into a two-ply yarn, but these singles are great on their own. Who doesn't love color??

However, a friend (Abi) taught me a great trick. Dye and dry your yarn then reskein it. Yes, RESKEIN it. Sounds crazy, but it redistributes the color nicely. I reskein all the time when I use a single dye color or dyes that are from similar color families. It makes the yarn color tweedy, subtle, and soft. The strong, contrasting colors I used here really illustrates how the color shifts.

I know, I know, this takes a little time, but as they saying goes: try it, you'll like it. You can even reskein while reading my blog. Enjoy!


  1. GORGEOUS!!!!!!! Love it! Oh and I will gladly tie the skeins before taking them off the niddy noddy next time.....

  2. Hmmmm, what can we barter so you can make me a nice chunky hat? I'm not very about a big pot of BakedPotato Soup or some Not Yo Momma's Banana Pudding???

    Ooh, Sunday brunch!!

  3. I love the colors you used!
    Do you dip one color and then let that dry before doing the next?

  4. Nancy, I did not...this time. I just kept removing the skeins and going onto the next dyebath. It makes it a rather wet process, but I like the bleeding of colors. And it's faster than waiting for it to dry.

  5. wow! that looks great. I could use a new scarf... no pressure! :-)