Dyeing cotton fibers is such a pain. Not only do I want to make sure that the pain is worth it, I want to make sure I get it right the first time. Not to mention, I’ll be using my precious Artfibers cotton (Rush), and I really don’t want to over-dye any of this stuff.
I’ve decided to knit up the skeins of blank cotton yarn I have with a knitting machine and then paint these long blanks by hand using a color combo of four (see below).
This may sound a bit geeky, and I’m sure there’s a better way to do this, but I used a graphics program to ‘plan’ out the color on the blanks. I think I’ll actually dye a test blank in leftover dyes that I’m not crazy about using one of the patterns below. Pattern 1 will result in a graduated dye dispersal. Pattern 2 is a recipe for plain striping. Pattern three will create broad strips of color with blends of the dye colors in criss-cross patterns dispersed throughout the fabric.
I want to know what the color patterns will be like in a large panel of stockinette knitting (say for a sweater). If only my math and programming skills were sharper, I could actually create a program that would help me estimate the staggering of the pattern based on the length and width of the knitting and the stitch gauge. Actually, I could probably do it if I had the time, but for now, I’m just going to have to rely on both my imagination and powers of estimation.