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Is it possible to tint plastic yarn so as to use the resulting tinted yarn for crochet or knitting projects? Answered

I have lots of white plastic bags, less colored bags from which to make plastinc yarn. The problem are : - the difficulty of getting colored bags; - finding bags with the right colors for a specific project. For instance, I wish to crochet a bag in white and ultramarine, but don't have any bag of the second color. If I could tint part of my plastic bags, I would be able to complet this project (a bag for my daughter, who is a Sea Cadet).



Best Answer 9 years ago

To piggyback on the first comment above, RIT may work, but what you need to look for is either a disperse dye, or I have accidentally dyed PVC with acid dyes. Disperse dyes are used for non natural fibers like polyester, so it should work with plastic bags. Use caution because the high heat needed to set the dye may melt the bags. It might be better to make the bag into to what you want, and then dye it after.

Can anybody tell me if the RIT or disperse dye worked and where to get it?

If you use clear plastic bags, like produce bags, you can use marker pins and highlighters to color it....
(Uncolored clear plastic comes out white for some reason!)
Put the desired color in the middle of your strip and fold it together. When you crochet, the color, protected by the plastic will show quite nicely. I made my mom a glass case and she didn't want just the white color, I used several colors interspersed with the plain clear and got a lovely colorful end product.
It doesn't have to be indelable, because it is twisted into the plarn just by crochetting it.

You could paint the whole sheet of plastic befor cutting with regular acrylic paint. It is flexable and will bend with the plastic. Then cut the plastic sheets and fold the inside...painted side.. together. This will work for larger projects like your purse.

I knew someone who dyed plastic fish tank tubing using Rit dye - the same laundry dye you can use to dye clothing. You could try washing or soaking the plastic yarn with a strong solution of that dye in the color you want. The only thing i would be worried about is that the dye might not actually penetrate the plastic, just sit on the surface instead. if that happens it's pretty likely that the dye would eventually rub off (hopefully not on your clothes or furniture). I'd definitely try some experiments first.

Not sure if this would work, but you could try coloring the bags (before you cut them up into yarn) with permanent marker. I've had good results with Bic permanent markers on Tyvek envelopes, which are the same kind of plastic as grocery bags; and with soda bottles, which are a related kind of plastic. Sharpies don't seem to do as well as the Bics, for some reason. It also seems to help to "set" the ink with heat from a hair dryer on "low." Good luck with your project. :)