Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Latte's Kool-Aid Sweater

Latte was way overdue for a new sweater. I was overdue for a Kool-Aid dyeing experiment. Here's what we both ended up with.

The Model:
Latte is a sweet little Miniature Poodle who adopted me almost ten years ago. She's all happy to be snuggled in her new wool sweater!

The Yarn:
Some buttery-soft, butter-colored lambswool recycled from a commercial sweater in a DK weight.

The Dye:
Three flavors/colors of Kool-Aid unsweetened; Tropical Punch, Orange, and Slammin' Strawberry-Kiwi.

The Technique:
After soaking the skeined yarn for about 30 minutes in warm water with a drop of dishwashing detergent (wetting agent), it was squeezed and placed in a Corningware casserole.

Each flavor/color of Kool-Aid was individually mixed with a cup of warm water, then poured over the yarn as seen below. This method will allow the original color of the yarn to still show.

The lidded casserole was then placed in the microwave and "cooked" on high for three minutes. At the beep, the yarn was allowed to rest three minutes. This process was repeated twice more, and the yarn was then set aside to cool.

After cooling, the yarn was gently washed and rinsed in warm water, given a turn in the spin cycle of the washing machine, then hung to dry.

The Sweater:
A couple of days later, I cast on for Latte's new sweater. The pattern is Casey's Coat from SNB Nation in size medium. It's trimmed with a bit of Lamb's Pride in Onyx from my stash.


Nancy said...

Thank you for posting this process. I reclaim yarn from sweaters, too. You have given me the courage to try Kool-Aide dyeing for myself.

Anonymous said...

Oh Latte is very smart.
This yarn is beautiful. Ha.....I've seen references to Kool-Aid before but didn't realize what it was.

JanKnit said...

For my friends outside the US...Kool-Aid is a soft drink mix that many of us grew up with. My childhood summers were not complete without gallons of the fruity-flavored beverage...especially when frozen into ice-pops!

In addition to being a flavorful drink mix, Kool-Aid contains some fun colors of food-grade dyes. This dye (and the citric acid in the mix) work very well as a yarn dye for protein fibers.