Using Space-Dyed Yarn

We all love our beautiful space-dyed yarns, whether we dye them ourselves or buy them at our local yarn shop. Sometimes one of those beautiful colors accumulates in one spot, which is not so beautiful. This is called pooling or puddling. Pooling sometimes occurs when the diameter of the knitting changes, for example, from the body of a sweater to the sleeves.

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Guild member Abi Hutchison of High Prairie Fibers, presented a variety of creative ways to avoid pooling for the April meeting.

Abi Hutchison presented the April program on using space-dyed yarn.

Abi Hutchison presented the April program on using space-dyed yarn.

To start her investigation, Abi knit samples from the same yarn using different stitches. She found stitches that rough up the surface of the fabric such as moss, cable, and seed stitches helped break up pooling. Alternating space-dyed yarn with a plain yarn  or knitting them together can also be effective. Another tip is to work with opposite ends, the inside and outside, of your ball of yarn.

Alternate two coordinating space-dyed yarns for an interesting result.

Alternate two coordinating space-dyed yarns for an interesting result.

Any technique that incorporates short rows such as modular or log cabin knitting can concentrate the colors of space-dyed yarns for dramatic results.

Modular knitting takes advantage of color changes.

Modular knitting takes advantage of color changes.

If you like the look of Fair Isle but don’t like the idea of changing all those colors, use a space-dyed yarn instead.

Use space-dyed yarn in Fair Isle knitting for color changes with no ends to weave in!

Use space-dyed yarn in Fair Isle knitting for color changes with no ends to weave in!

Mosaic knitting or other slip stitch techniques work well with space-dyed yarns.

An example of mosaic knitting using space-dyed and solid yarns.

An example of mosaic knitting using space-dyed and solid yarns.

There are many resources available for instruction and patterns to apply Abi’s suggestions. An Internet search or checking out our Guild’s library would be a good start.

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Of course space-dyed yarns can also be used in weaving, but that would be a different program!

Thank you, Abi, for delving into this topic and sharing what you learned with us. It’s time to grab some needles and yarn and get started. You can follow Abi’s High Prairie Fibers on Facebook.

Here are some links to free patterns:

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http://knitting-and-so-on.blogspot.ch/2014/05/seifenblasen-lace-scarf.html

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http://knitting-and-so-on.blogspot.de/2015/06/ojos-de-bruja-scarf.html

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