Tie-Dyed for the Conservative Rebel

5 Nov

My dad, as I have mentioned before, rides a Harley and has long hair which he wears in a plait down his back. Despite all this, he is quite conservative in his tastes, and this is always a trial come gift-giving time. He likes brown (as witnessed by the bottomless tin of Mission Brown housepaint that dwelt in our shed when I was a kid), but I lack the mental fortitude to knit plain brown socks, so I am tie-dyeing some yarn. Here’s how I did it:

Patonyle beige, 50g balls, two thereof, wound into a skein and all the usual prep done (most of you know how it’s done, and for those of you that don’t, there are some excellent basic dyeing tutorials out there -much better than I could possibly put together myself. I’m using Ashford dyes on the sage advice of the Queen of the Dyepots). After soaking the yarn, I gently picked up the wet skein and tied a knot in one end, pulling it firmly but not super-tight, thus:


Then I put it in the crock-pot with the dye, let it heat while I ate dinner and watched Supernatural (Eye of the Tiger, baby!), and turned it off before I went to bed. Tuesday morning the dye was all exhausted and the whole deal had cooled down (when I’m dyeing, I almost always do it in the evening so that I can go to bed and leave it, otherwise I’m poking at it every ten minutes to see if it’s cooled yet, which is a Very Bad Idea), and it looked like this:


This is Ashford’s ‘Rust’. Then I retied it in a different spot on the skein, like so:


and overdyed it with brown. Ta da!


Chocolate and espresso and mahogany and red ochre and rust, with just a tiny flash of the original beige. Lurve. Just hope the Parental Unit likes it.


8 Responses to “Tie-Dyed for the Conservative Rebel”

  1. amy November 5, 2008 at 9:35 am #

    Very cool! Although I love a good brown myself. 🙂

  2. Suzi November 5, 2008 at 12:34 pm #

    Love the effect Kate!..looks really great!! Im sure the parental unit will love it!….And im with you on the Eye of the Tiger baby!…loved it!!!sooo funny!

  3. Regenia November 5, 2008 at 1:14 pm #

    Wow Kate! I didn’t know you were a dye genius too. I wonder how the technique would look spun up. (yes, I picked it up as yet another hobby and will blog soon). I have about 3 meters of white merino roving that I was planning on dying half blue and half green and then plying the two colors together for a Christmas gift, but I bet this would make some lovely teal shades too.

  4. becky c. November 5, 2008 at 9:45 pm #

    Wow! Love that color, looks like autumn to me. Can’t wait to see it knitted up.

  5. Lynne November 5, 2008 at 9:52 pm #

    Wot’s not to lurve?

  6. cathy November 6, 2008 at 6:35 am #

    Wow,very nice,must try this way too,cant wait to see the knitted result!!

  7. tinkingbell November 6, 2008 at 7:58 am #

    Oh – wow! just looks good enough to eat (are you calling it Jaffa?)

  8. Kate November 7, 2008 at 6:20 pm #

    Oh, do I have some fun ideas now!!!
    thanks for sharing:>

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