Dying Angora Fiber

Younger daughter and I spent Saturday afternoon dying some angora fiber. It had been so long since I had done this last! It was so much fun, although I realized I tend to gravitate towards the same colors. I will be doing more this week and will have to make myself step outside the box. I have used all kinds of dyes before, kool-aid, nature stuff like golden rod, and even the usual fabric acid dyes. My favorite (especially with the kiddos helping) is the cake dye gels. You can get them in any craft store and they have a huge assortment of colors. I have found that the colors are really nice and bright and the only two other ingredients you need are vinegar and water. If you want to try this at home for a fun experiment or homeschool project, you don't even need the fiber. You can purchase a skein or two of white yarn (just your basic type yarn) and the cake gel colors of your choice. Get a stainless steel pot, put in water, the gel (the amount will depend on how much color you want in your yarn), pour in some vinegar and put it on the stove. You will have to "undo" your yarn skein by wrapping it around your arms or the back of a chair to get it out of the ball. Put the yarn in the pot and bring to a boil. Your yarn will grab the color as it cooks. If it isn't grabbing enough add some more vinegar. When it has grabbed all the color it can, your water will be clear again. Dump the yarn into the sink, in a strainer of some kind and rinse. You can wash out the vinegar smell with a gentle soap. Hang the skein somewhere to dry and you have created your own color yarn! The kids will love this!

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