I’ve been dyeing some self-striping yarn by winding a bigger diameter skein, dyeing 28 inches of it one color, and the remainder another — when knitted in a typical sock configuration, you get one row of the first color, followed by two rows of the other. There are various ways of doing this, but here’s a particularly fun method and colorway that I’ve developed.
First I make a very hot vinegared dyebath in a purple that I’ve mixed from red and blue dye. The longer section of the skein goes into this while I’m holding the shorter section out of the water.
The red dye and much of the blue strikes on the skein as purple, but there is some blue left in the dyebath.
Dropping in the remaining undyed section of the skein allows it to start soaking up the blue.
The purple section is still taking up a little of the blue as well. This makes for a very interesting and nuanced purple.
Since I wanted to reuse the pot of water, I then steamed the yarn to make sure the dye got throughly fixed. Here’s the skein as it’s cooling down after steaming.
A bonus is that there’s still a little blue left in the dyebath, because I didn’t let the skein cool in it and absorb those last few molecules of blue dye.
So I can take another skein of yarn and drop it in to soak up those last bits. It’s a prettier pale blue in person, and may stay that color, or get overdyed to deepen the color. So many choices!