Tie dye is a fun way to transform a blank surface into something bold and cheerful. Today on the blog we are going to walk you through how to get a tie dye effect on Marshmallow DK. This dye method uses multiple colors layered onto two skeins of soft and fluffy superwash Marshmallow DK.
2 skeins Marshmallow DK
Small cups for mixing dye
4-6 colors acid dye (Dharma Acid Dyes were used here)
Chafing dish or tray
Stockpot with lid and burner
Dissolve two tablespoons of citric acid into a large bowl full of cool water. Add your yarn and presoak until it is fully absorbed. Once the yarn is fully presoaked, squeeze out all the excess water. Reserve the excess soaking water in the large bowl. You want the yarn to be damp but not dripping. Line your tray or chafing dish with plastic wrap so that at least 4” of plastic wrap hangs off the edges. Lay the two skeins down in the tray. When you lay down the yarn, some of it will overlap.
Take your small cups and fill them with the excess water from soaking the yarn. If you don’t have enough water left, just add more water to the bowl and dissolve a dash of citric acid into it. In each cup, dissolve a quarter teaspoon of dye. The dye colors used here are Dharma brand Peacock Blue, Spearmint Breeze, Bright Aqua, Bright Yellow, Emerald Green, and True Turquoise. Feel free to experiment with your own combinations! Remember when handling powdered dyes to wear a respirator.
Slowly pour your first color of dye onto the yarn right in the center. To get the best distribution, keep moving your hand slowly while you pour directly onto the yarn. This ensures the yarn soaks up all the pigment evenly and prevents the dye from puddling and dripping out.
Add your second color of dye by pouring it onto the yarn just like you did before. As you add additional dye colors, start from the outer edges and work your way in toward the center. This allows you to control how much the colors bleed into each other and where you want the bare yarn to peek through.
Repeat the above steps for all of your remaining colors until you are happy with the color saturation and distribution. Take care not to add too much liquid to the yarn as that will be difficult to work with in the next step. Since the yarn is layered on top of itself here, a great way to check dye distribution is to gently lift up sections of the yarn with tongs to make sure the dye has saturated as much as you desire. The dye will naturally soak down and diffuse through the layers of yarn for a natural color blend.
Gently roll your dyed yarn up in the plastic wrap that was lining the tray. The easiest way to do this is to start on one side and fold the extra plastic wrap onto the yarn and then roll it like a burrito. Wrap your yarn bundle in another layer or two of plastic wrap to keep all the yarn contained.
Fill a pot with one to two inches of water at the bottom and place the steamer basket inside. Add your yarn bundle. Make sure that any tools used for dyeing are labeled and kept separate from anything that handles food. Yarn dyeing tools should not be used for food.
Place your plastic-wrapped yarn into the steamer basket. Add heat, close the lid, and steam the yarn for at least an hour to set the dye. Turn off the heat and allow the yarn to cool fully before handling it. Unwrap and rinse the yarn until the water runs clear. Hang up your yarn to dry.
Enjoy your tie dye yarn! This colorful, hand-dyed yarn is ready to be gifted to a friend or crocheted into a cozy scarf. Be sure to tag us on social media using #knomadyarn. We can’t wait to see what you make!
Tags: Hand dyers, marshmallow DK
Love your tie-dye color choices and Marshmalliw is a fabulous base!
1. Please let your readers know that dye water (for mixing the dye powders) needs to be extremely hot in order for the dye to efficiently dissolve. Otherwise they may get blotchy results.
2. Also .5-1 teaspoon (2-4 grams) of citric acid or a glug of vinegar is a sufficient amount of acid.
3. Provide a link to a good respirator so that readers don’t think a covid-type mask is the proper PPE. I use the 3M half-mask.
Thank you! That’s a great point – and we will incorporate that in the future.