A few months back, I found Leethal‘s sleeve-dying tutorial on CraftStylish, and had to try it. I only had two sweaters on hand that met the requirements (animal fiber, light color), and even though they weren’t ideal (one was an almost-felted tweedy shetland wool, and the other has that string of black mixed in) I jumped in anyway.
I used several types of Kool-Aid, and two boxes of food coloring – traditional and neon. I’m so madly in love with the results. I’ve been collecting suitable sweaters since this experiment, but it’s going slow. I have only three that would work really well. It’s depressing. Anyway, I highly reccomend the tutorial, especially if (like me) you’ve never dyed yarn before. It’s best if you have some experience recycling sweaters, but you can handle it if you dont’ know how to do that. Leethal has a tutorial for recycling as well, if I remember correctly.
The yarn with the black strand is a dk 100% Merino wool ex-J-Crew sweater. It really is some of the softest yarn I’ve worked with – the drape is amazing. J-Crew is great for recycling. So far one sleeve (unpictured) was dyed purple and green and made into this short-sleeved baby cardigan, but with a different lace pattern and a few selvedge modifications. The other (unpictured) sleeve was dyed shades of purple and pink and magenta, and made into this long-sleeved baby cardigan. Both are currently in the waiting-to-be-blocked pile. I’m currently making a pinwheel knitted baby blanket out of the rainbow-colored skein. Yes. I know it will not be enough yarn. Shut up.
As for the Shetland, it’s a vintage scratchy yarn that I no longer have the tag to. The back (unpictured) was dyed pink and green and made into 1/2 of a granny square baby blanket. The other three have been left unworked because they are so scratchy, and it’s difficult to make scratchy things for babies.