Yes folks, you read that right. You can dye wool in the microwave! The first time I learned this, I was a little hesitant. I mean…won’t it burn? Well, it could, if not done properly.
The other day I got adventurous. My kids were home and I didn’t feel like doing housework. Yes, that feeling comes over me often, then I usually find my knitting needles and sit down. Only, I had been oohing and ahing over the beautiful hand dyed yarn on etsy and I figured, hey… why not!
So with my Wilton color gels and vinegar in hand, I grabbed some wool and mason jars and off I went, on an experiment worthy of crazy colors.
How To Dye Wool In The Microwave
- Wool (must be at least 50% animal fiber…) I used Patons Classic Wool for most of my dying. Cut into mini skeins. (I wrapped them around my arm extension cord style 10 times)
- Wilton Color Gels
- Mason Jars
- A protected work surface
- A place to hang up the yarn to dry
- A microwave
Fill a bowl 1/2 full with warm water. Add two table spoons of vinegar. Presoak your mini skeins.
Prepare your dyes. Add 1 cup of water, and a small amount of the Wilton Food Gels to each of your mason jars. Those gels go a long way so you wont need much. Add a teaspoon of vinegar to each jar as well. Mix until the gels are well dissolved.
Add your mini skeins to the mason jars. And push down with a fork until the wool will stay under the water.
Microwave on high for 3 minutes, or until the water hits 180 degrees C.
When the dye is exhausted, you will be able to pull the wool out from the jar and the water will be clear.
Hint – tie your skeins.. please tie your skeins. If you don’t you’ll spend sooo much time trying to untangle them!
Once your wool has cooled down ( be patient and allow it to cool…you’re not trying to make felt.. yet) give it a rinse until the water runs clear. You can add a mild wool soap or dish soap as well. You don’t want your wool to bleed later on, so get that excess dye out now.
Hang your wool and let it dry over night.
It really is that easy.