Dying for me is very new. I am not saying my way is correct but it sure was fun and I am happy with the way it turned out. Adele had taught me at her house how to crock pot dye with Pro Chemical dyes and that night I went home and ordered my dyes.
The first step was soaking the fiber/yarn in hot water with citric acid crystals and synthrapol (this is what Pro Chem gave me for samples.) You can also just use citric acid and vinegar. This helps the fiber absorb and set the dye so it holds and doesn't fade or bleed.
After letting the yarn soak for 30 minutes, I removed them from the soak, squeezed out the excess water and made a little pocket to put dye in.
*Please note that you are using chemicals. Gloves should be used at all time and Do Not use the same containers and tools that you use for food.
I added the hot pink powder dye to the crock pot and allowed it to dissolve and simmer. The crock pot should be on high but the water should NOT be boiling or your fiber will felt.
Next, I put a grey dye in the pocket of the yarn. You do not need to use a lot of the powder dye at all. A little goes a very long way!
Then I submerged the balls of yarn in the water. This is what they looked like after a minute or two.
I let the yarn sit until the water is almost totally clear. This means your fiber has absorbed all of the dye. If there is still more dye that wont absorb you can add some more of the citric acid right into the crock pot.
Right after you take the yarn out of the crock pot you should have a soak ready- this is just hot water. It allows any excess dye to come out.
In the tub drying
This is the final result and I'm very happy with it!
There are different dyes for natural fibers and synthetic fibers. Make sure you know the fiber content before purchasing your dyes. Like I said, I'm no expert... These are just the steps I followed and I wanted to share. I also played around with putting one side of the skein in and changing colors and putting the other side in. Like all fiber arts its a creative process and you have to experiment to see what works best for you.
The yarn on the bottom I let soak for only 15 minutes in the citric acid solution.
You can see that it did not absorb as much dye.