Take Clara's yarn class!
learn about yarn from Clara on Craftsy

subscribe to Knitter's Review

Yarn Reviews

Related info

Over-the-Counter Colors:
Hand-Dyed Yarns You Can Buy

If you don't have the time or the inclination to dye your own yarns, yet you enjoy the hand-dyed look, you're in luck. Now more than ever, yarn vendors are emerging that specialize in hand-painted colors.

The Price of Color

A common misconception is that all hand-dyed yarns are astronomically expensive. True, they typically will have a slightly higher price tag than their factory-manufactured counterparts. And hand-dying does take time and skill, which should be appropriately rewarded.

But another factor that can drive up the price is simply the size of the skein. Take, for example, Mountain Colors' popular Weavers Wool yarn. It retails for $16 per skein, but each skein is a whopping 350 yards. Heaven, from Lorna's Laces, retails for $60 per hank, but you get 975 yards.

On the other end of the spectrum, Colinette yarns retail for $18 to $23 per skein, and you only get between 50 and 100 yards at a time. So you can certainly pay more if you'd like, but the point is that you don't have to.

Pick Your Color

Doing an overview of hand-painted yarns is like touring the Louvre on roller skates. We're discussing yarns that are, themselves, individual works of art.

To give you an initial sense of what's out there, I've compiled a brief list of some of the most intriguing hand-dyed yarns on the market.

arrow  Colinette
arrow  Fibreworks
arrow  Interlacements
arrow  Koigu
arrow  Lorna's Laces
arrow  Pine Tree Yarns
arrow  Willow Wood Pond
arrow  Alchemy Yarns

Previous Reader Comments

"i too am very taken with the beauty and wide range of hand dyed yarns.. i think my favorites are those from SHEAFER. the one i am currently using is called LAUREL and it is gorgeous! it is 100% pima cotton and the colors are so subtle that is is amazing. i also have used their hand dyed marino and the results are spell binding. it sold at my local yarn shop for 30.00 per 400 yards!!!! not at all a bad price i don't think!" Gini, 7/1/2001

"For a beautiful collection of natural and plant dyed yarns, go to www.lalanawools.com (this shop is located in Taos, NM). The owner's speciality is working with natural & plant dyes. I haven't personally used her yarns, but friends have, & the yarn and resulting garments were gorgeous. I believe dye kits may be available for those who wish to try plant/natural dyes themselves. I have no affiliation with the store or owner." rranch, 6/29/2001

"Thanks for the info on hand dyed yarns, but you left out my favorite souce--Brown Sheep makes Handpaint yarn that is reasonable and comes in many more colorways than just a year or so ago. The problem with all this is that to get naturally dyed, handpainted yarns I still have to do it myself." bflexner, 6/28/2001

arrow Discuss hand-dyed yarns in our forums

     Colinette Zanziba and Fandango

In This Article