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How To Dye a Crystal Ball Inspired Colorway on PRISM

By Gina Rockenwagner on August 13, 2021

Spooky season is coming up! As soon as that first cool breeze hits, you know I’m reaching for my knitting. With so many new yarns to dye from Knomad, I have my work cut out for me! One beautiful new bare yarn is called PRISM. Prism is a blend of soft superwash merino wool with a touch of silk. The silk provides a soft glisten to the yarn that gives this two ply construction a magical look. Great for sweaters and accessories you wear next to skin, we think Prism will quickly become a treasured part of your yarn line up!

I’m feeling very witchy with autumn upon us! I’m dyeing up three skeins of Prism in a bewitching colorway inspired by the crystal ball emoji, with deep purple, black and speckles of black on a white background. Hop on your broomstick and join me for the tutorial!

MATERIALS

  • 3 skeins of Knomad PRISM yarn 85% Superwash Merino Wool, 15% Mulberry Silk We designed this project for PRISM, but it would work well on any of our yarns.
  • Dharma Trading co dye for silk and wool. I used the colors HYACINTH, INTENSE IRIS, and TRUE BLACK.
  • Gram scale
  • 3 cups to mix the dye in. If one of the cups has a lid, this will make it easy to store any unused dye powder mix from the speckles for a future use.
  • Citric acid powder
  • Metal chafing pan at least 3 inches deep – We need to dye in something with a lot of surface area in order to get nice speckles.
  • A tablespoon
  • Tongs
  • Your regular set up for heat setting yarn
  • Optional: 3 zip ties

SOAK THE YARN

Loop a zip tie around each skein of yarn, if you are using them.

Soak the yarn in lukewarm water with a dash of citric acid for about 1 hour.

MIX AND MEASURE THE DYE

Make sure to always protect yourself with gloves and a respirator whenever you work with dye in its powder form. A dust or surgical mask is not enough protection to safely work with dye powder!

1st CUP – 3 grams intense iris + 3 grams hyacinth + 6 grams citric acid powder + 1 cup very hot water

2nd CUP – 6 grams true black + 6 grams citric acid powder + 1 cup very hot water

3rd CUP – 1 gram true black + 1 teaspoon citric acid powder

Mix each cup well.

DYE THE YARN

Remove the skeins from the soaking liquid, gently squeezing the excess liquid out of the yarn. You want them to be damp, but not sopping wet. Place the three skeins side by side in the pan, pressing them down and spreading out the skeins so as much surface area as possible is exposed.  Your yarn should look like the image above. Add 2 cups of the soaking liquid to the pan.

Pour the contents of the cup of liquid true black dye mix over the far end of the 3 skeins, starting by pouring along the back edge of the pan and working across back and forth until about 1/3 of the 3 skeins of yarn are covered in black dye. The black dye will move a little bit, but that’s ok. That helps us get the spooky look we are after!

Next, take the contents of the cup of purple dye and pour this over the middle 1/3 section of the 3 skeins. Make sure to overlap with the black a little bit to prevent the bare yarn from showing through the dark sections.

 

Cover the pan and heat for 10-15 minutes.

Use a spoon to lightly sprinkle the true black dye powder mix over the bare part of the skeins. Go easy here and add it little by little. You can always add more, but it’s hard to take away dye once you’ve added it to the yarn.

When you have enough black speckles for your liking, cover the pan and heat for 10 minutes. Allow the yarn to cool for about 15 minutes.

Cover the pan and heat for 10 minutes.

Allow the yarn to cool completely.

RINSE AND DRY

Rinse and dry the yarn as you normally would.

Enjoy your finished yarn! Make sure to tag us using #Knomadyarn so we can see all your fabulous projects.

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Gina Rockenwagner

Gina Fama Röckenwagner (she/her) is a color-obsessed knit designer and textile artist based in Los Angeles, California. Her work has been featured in Vogue Knitting, Pom Pom Quarterly, and Purl Soho’s eponymous blog. She founded her line of soft, comfortable, and size-inclusive clothing, SOFT HAUS, in 2015. When not working on yarn-related endeavors, Gina can be found quilting, biking, baking and watching trashy tv with her cats, Paloma and Blooper.

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