How to Dye Rainbow Silk

Rainbow dyeing is a quick and fun method for dyeing silk, wool, mohair or other protein fiber using concentrated CIBA Acid-based powder dyes.

 
Difficulty Level:
Easy
Time Required:
30 minutes
Here’s How:

     
  1. Thoroughly wet the clean fibre or yarn to be dyed.
  2. Fill a large pot with water.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of vinegar to the dyepot and stir.
  4. Add 2 – 4 oz. of fibre or yarn into the dyepot.
  5. Using the end of a chopstick, dip it into the dye powder and then place the dye into the edge of the dyepot.
  6. With another chopstick, dip it into another colour of dye powder and place the dye into the dyepot on the other side of the dyepot.
  7. If using 3 or more colours, repeat Step 7
  8. If dyeing more wool, place another layer of wool into the dyepot and repeat steps 5 – 8, changing the location of dye placement.
  9. Allow dyepot to simmer at least 20 minutes, or until all the dye has exhausted.
  10. If the dye is exhausted before you have sufficient colour, you can add more dye, by gently lifting the edge of the fibre and adding more dye.
  11. Turn off the heat and allow the dyepot to cool
  12. Remove the dyed fibre from the dyepot, squeeze out excess moisture and let dry.
  13. Happy Spinning!

Tips:

  • Use clean, scoured wool.
  • No stirring, or you will get felt!
  • Make sure there is sufficient water to completely cover the fibre. 
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    Books – Dyes and Colour
    Color by Accident: Low-Water Immersion Dyeing
    The Yarn Lover’s Guide to Hand Dyeing: Beautiful Color and Simple Knits
    Yarns to Dye For
    Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece: Custom-Color Your Favorite Fibers with Dip-Dyeing, Hand-Painting, Tie-Dyeing, and Other Creative Techniques
    Yarn Works: How to Spin, Dye, and Knit Your Own Yarn
    Tie-Dye: Dye It, Wear It, Share It
    Prepared to Dye: Dyeing Techniques for Fiber Artists
    EBAY – NATURAL DYES
    NATURAL DYES – US
    NATURAL DYES – UK

    Last Updated on March 21, 2021 by Paivi Suomi

    By Paivi Suomi

    I've had an interest in weaving, looms, yarns and textiles since I was a small child. I learned to knit, crochet, sew, do needlepoint at my mother's knee. My grandmother was a Saami from northern Norway. I am very interested in studying more about traditional Saami and Finnish style weaving and handicrafts. Paivi Suomi