I've been experimenting with yarn and my crockpot and some Wilton's food coloring gel lately. This is what I came up with:
I started with natural, off-white wool that I harvested from a soft, lovely United Colors of Benneton sweater I purchased for $3 at Saver's. (come back tomorrow to read a funny story about the unraveling) I was going for a coral color-- I used some rose pink and just a little bit of yellow. I ended up with something more salmon, but for a first try I'm absolutely thrilled.
This method was really easy, and I can't wait to try it again. I followed this great tutorial. There's also a group on Ravelry, What a Kool Way to Dye, that is "for those of us that get our yarn dye in the dessert and drink aisles". The pages there are full of lots of great information and inspiration.
If you're not already on Ravelry, by the way, you should join. Right now. (it's for crocheters, too!)
And here's my salmon yarn knitted up. It's combined with undyed yarn from the same sweater for a stripey pattern. I'm making this little hat and I'm already completely smitten.
This picture illustrates one of the funny things about dyeing fiber blends-- the different fibers will absorb the colors differently. This sweater was a merino wool and angora blend. If you look closely, you can see a bit of a pink haze (esp. in the upper left corner). That's because the angora took on more pink, and the merino took on more yellow. So really, the whole process is part science, part magic, and frequently a little surprising-- my favorite kind of crafting.