|Here is a bunch of yarn I dyed with Kool-Aid for a blanket for Clucky.|
My preferred method to dye yarn and fiber for a semi-solid color is on the stove in a pot. I also like to use the microwave to heat hand-painted or multi colored yarn and fiber - hand painting it in a microwave safe pyrex or casserole dish. If you use the microwave or oven to heat set your fiber, you will want to make sure your yarn or fiber is always damp/wet, so it doesn't burn.
|These were hand painted with Kool-Aid and heat set in the microwave.|
|Ooo . . . rainbow yarn dyed with Kool-Aid|
|I call this one "Sunset" - also done with Kool-Aid.|
Here is a very basic tutorial on how to dye fiber (or yarn) with Kool-Aid on the stove top.
First you need to soak your yarn and fiber. Depending on the type of fiber, it may need to soak for 30 minutes to overnight. I find that I get the brightest colors when I soak my alpaca yarn or fiber overnight. I like to soak mine in a crock pot or large baking dish.
|Here is some alpaca roving soaking in a baking dish.|
|Look at all these choices!|
|Here I picked pink lemonade|
|Water in pot.|
|Add the Kool-Aid|
|Kool-Aid and water mixed|
|Fiber in the Kool-Aid|
You then want to warm up and heat your water until it is just below boiling. Now heat and agitation can cause wool, including alpaca, to felt. We don't want that to happen when we are dyeing. Once the water is heated keep it at that temperature for 10-15 minutes. Then turn off the stove and let the water cool down until it is cool to the touch. You don't want to handle the fiber (or yarn) very much right now, or it could felt.
As the water is cooling you can check to see if all the dye has been absorbed by the fiber. I like to do this with a spoon. I just lift out a spoonful of water and see if the water is clear or gently push the fiber off to the side to check the color of the water.
|Water is clear, all done!|
|Rinsing the fiber -- (the pink didn't turn green - this is a different batch of dyed fiber)|
|In the salad spinner -- (I also dyed orange fiber that day!)|
|Finished alpaca roving - I dyed a lot of different colors that day|
|Berry Blue Kool-Aid|
|Angora (rabbit) dyed with Pink Lemonade and Grape Kool-Aid|
Have fun dyeing your own yarn and fiber!
Here are some other references on dyeing yarn with food-safe dyes.
Ravelry group - What A Kool Way to Dye
Dye Your Yarn - a great reference for dyeing yarn complete with color charts for various types of food coloring and kool-aid.