Before we get started dying your yarn, we need it in a skein. A skein of yarn is basically a nice neat loop of yarn held together in a couple spots by scrap yarn. It’s good for dying , since it lets your dye get to every little bit of your yarn, but prevents your yarn from becoming the world’s biggest knot.
Sometimes you can buy yarn already in a skein (usually from knitting specialty stores), but usually it comes in balls when you buy it from JoAnn’s or something like that. Putting it in a skein is a bit of a pain, but it’s worth it.
So, how’s it done?
First, wrap your yarn around something. I’m using the backs of two chairs sitting next to each other. You could use a really big book, or the hands of a very patient friend. Keep wrapping until you have it all wrapped up. (I’m actually splitting my ball of yarn in half, and making two even-ish skeins of wool. This way, I can dye them separately and have two different colors of yarn.) Tie the ends of your yarn together to keep everything neat.
Then, using scrap yarn or embroidery floss, add a couple ties around your skein. Hold the embroidery floss behind the yarn, while it’s still wrapped around the chair back (or whatever). Split the yarn in half with your thumb.
Add a couple more ties around the skein.
Slip the skein of yarn off the chair back, and you’re ready to start dying. (The yarn, that is. Don’t actually die. That would suck.)