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Playing with Kool-Aid

Summertime had me busy with the garden, so I suspended my fiber activities. Once the last of the butternut squash and persimmons were brought in, I took stock of my fiber supply.

Wow. So much fluff. The rabbits had had nothing to do all summer but sit in their cages and grow fur. I had been "harvesting" it, stuffing it in bags, and stowing the bags in a box, to be dealt with later. What was I going to do with all that angora?

Well, spin it, obviously. But I might as well have some fun with it, too.

I had heard about Kool-Aid dyeing, and since Bruno, Sven, Callahan, and Finnegan had supplied me with so much pure white angora fiber, I decided to try it. There are many on-line sources for information about the technique, so I won't go into much detail here. I washed 30 grams of fibers and then put it in a pot with simmering water and a packet of unsweetened Kool-Aid. After about 30 minutes the color was fully absorbed in the fiber and the water was completely clear. Once it was dry, the fiber looked like cotton candy.

I used Black Cherry, Grape, and Pink Lemonade flavors for my first three batches, then spun it into a variegated yarn. The dye had not entirely penetrated the masses of fiber, so some parts stayed white or were lightly dyed. I rather like how it turned out:

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