Dyeing For a Birthday Sweater

As Thor’s (belated) birthday sweater nears completion, I’ve started on another birthday sweater.  Granddaughter F turns 6 years old in June and will have a sweater knit just for her.

ErasePic1During my recent stash sorting day I (re)discovered 550 grams of cream-colored Dale Garn’s “Falk” – a machine washable wool (50g/106m).  Purchased some 20 years ago, I still had left over from my original Falk stash – a large portion of which I used to knit a poncho for Granddaughter F two years earlier.

(I frequently buy good yarn I like in cream or pale colors I don’t like – when it’s at a good price – knowing eventually I’ll drag out my dye pot – just as I did with the Falk for Granddaughter F’s sweater.)

ErasePic2While Thor was away for a week (I tend to monopolize the kitchen), I skeined the yarn, tossed the skeins into a big pot of water, brought the water to a rolling boil, added some soap, swished it around and then let it sit overnight.  The next morning I fished the skeins out, rinsed them and let drain in a big colander in the sink.

ErasePic3Next, the skeins went into a dye pot I made up using Jacquard Acid Dye, color “Hot Fuchsia.” I used plain vinegar as the mordant.  Once the dye was absorbed into the yarn, back into the colander the skeins went.  After they cooled, I rinsed and drained them again, rolled them in a big towel and let sit overnight, and then hung them out to dry.

ErasePicGranddaughter F – lover of every color pink – should be, as they say in the U.S., tickled pink!  I hope she’ll like the sweater pattern too (Sirdar 2081).  (Here’s the Ravelry link.)

erasepic5I haven’t used a Sirdar pattern in a couple of decades (no charts!), but thought this sweater too cute – despite the fact the pattern is written out – to pass by.

Now I have to go find my graph paper.  🙂




About sweatyknitter

Fiber art devotee, author, and amateur artisan bread baker.
This entry was posted in Dyeing, Fibers, Knitting. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Dyeing For a Birthday Sweater

  1. Oh dear – yes of course … I (not wisely) relied on spellcheck (something I always told my students NOT to do). Thank you for noting my error!



  2. Depends on the fiber you spun. Some fiber can be dyed in cold water, though I have never used cold water to dye.



  3. “To dye” as in to change the color in fabric, hair, etc. (Not “to die” as in to cease breathing and turn to dust.)


  4. Then you’d probably love the array of pinks in my granddaughter’s closet! 🙂 But this project is REALLY pink … I thought – given the dye’s name (Hot Fuchsia) – it would have a bit more purple. Oh well, the pinker the better – for Granddaughter F at least!


  5. caityrosey says:

    Ack. Autocorrect inserted “hag”.


  6. caityrosey says:



  7. I went through a stage where I would knit only from naturally colored wool … that is, until a close friend of mine told me I had to stop dressing like a 6 foot bran muffin. 🙂


  8. Wool skeins handle boiling water with ease; that doesn’t full the wool. But don’t put skeins of wool INTO boiling water. First put them into a pan of cool or tepid water and then bring to a boil. You don’t want to shock the wool either – that is, don’t fish the skeins out of the boiling water and put them into a pan of cold water. Further, you don’t want to agitate the wool too much when it is in very hot water.

    I’ve always liked Sirdar patterns but have little patience with its written pattern form. 🙂 I think, particularly, Sirdar has lovely children’s patterns.

    Yes, Granddaughter F is batty for anything pink … she’s been in that stage for a few years but thankfully there is an array of colors in “pink” so knitting for her doesn’t get boring. 🙂 For Grandson O, I am never quite sure what colors and patterns a little boy would like – but he seems to like anything I make him!



  9. starproms says:

    I haven’t tried dyeing yet, but soon will be because someone has promised me a raw fleece (to play with). Can you tell me how come you can put your skeins into boiling water with dye in it? I would have thought that would ruin the yarn for sure by turning it into felt? Please explain. Thank you.
    Your granddaughter is lovely. So nice that she likes pinks. I’ve only had boys so far. I love Sirdar patterns and have used them a lot. I’ve never used a chart except for Fair-Isle knitting. It looks so difficult to follow.


  10. caityrosey says:

    One of these days I just need to try dying something. I’m sure it would open up lots of possibilities. Especially with my fleeces. Natural colors only float my boat so much….


  11. Ludmilla says:



  12. sindhoooo says:

    I love pink too 🙂 Just fell in love with the yarn you dyed…


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