Coupla things I forgot to mention yesterday:

Thing 1: I used more pink than calculated (9 mL instead of 6) because it didn't look as dark as I would have liked. Of course, it migrated a good bit, so that accounts for the larger pink sections.

Thing 2: I chose 1" and .5" bands because I guessed that socks were usually knit over 72 stitches, so 30 loose stitches would be roughly half that. Ergo, 1" stripes would actually be .5" stripes, and so on. In practice, I think I was on crack to think that you'd knit 72 stitch socks with Kona. The socks I'm knitting now are over 52 stitches, and while my feet are small, maybe, perhaps, one might work over 60 stitches, max. Max. Despite my inability to think straight, the calculation ended up being pretty close. The knit stripes are roughly half the depth of the dyed stripes:

Comparing stripe sizes

Also, I mentioned the yarn fluffs up when washed/cooked, I think you can see the difference here:

Comparing dyed and undyed Kona


Because of the way the first batch dyed, there aren't grey and light pink sections, so much as black and pink separated by the littlest bit of white and off-whites. As I mentioned yesterday, the dye migrated quite a bit. The initial black stripe was skooshed within the 1" section, but migrated about half an inch beyond that. When I added the "grey" dye (diluted black), there was already so much black that it just made the slightly fainter black more black. Same with the pinks.

Goals 1 and 2: I wanted to eliminate as much of the black drool as possible, and get a little more definition in the greys and light pink, as well as white sections.

Things I changed:

Thing 1: I eliminated the grey and light pink dyes completely, figuring the migrated dyes were enough. I think this was about right - you can see more greys and light pinks in the second batch, and you can definitely see it pre-nuke:


Also, this meant there was a LOT less liquid on the blanks so that meant less liquid to carry the black dyes around. This decreased the black drool considerably. It also meant less dye, which meant less migration and more distinct white areas post-nuking. Excellent.

Thing 2: I also remembered to spritz the vinegar BEFORE nuking. This meant not having to unwrap and possibly contaminate the non-black sections.

Thing 3: I carefully folded up the packet accordian style with black at the edges and put a small glass jar under the pink section to keep it elevated. I figured any black dye that wanted to roam would stick to the lowered areas and stay away from the pinks. I think this helped.


Thing 4: I had to nuke for smaller amounts of time because, as the temperature went up, the packet started inflating and falling over. I nuked until it was about to fall over, and then let it cool a bit before repeating. I think I had 4 nukes instead of the usual 3, so this wasn't too bad.

So, what do I think?

I think, no matter how you look at it, making self-striping yarns is time-consuming.

I think this method means a lot less winding for self-striping yarn. That's a definite plus. No walking around chairs or keeping track of peg boards.

I think if you know how to use your knitting machine, it's not bad making up the blanks. If you don't, you may curse or sweat.

I think applying the dyes is not difficult but probably less mindless than the usual ways.

I think the mottled and unpredictable transitions between stripes is very interesting and fun to watch.

I think carrying around a dyed blank is less fiddly than a skein of yarn: no tangles or knots.

I think intentional frogging of dyed blanks as you're knitting up socks is fun and satisfying. Frogging is not fun when it's endless, when it's because of a mistake you made, or when it means you're negating hours of work. None of these apply!

I think I'm done with self-striping socks for a while.