Monday, 30 March 2015

Trying Tie Dyeing with Dylon


National Craft Month is nearly over!  I wanted to squeeze in this last creation before it ended though, and Dylon were kind enough to help me out with my long time wish to try out tie dyeing.  Now, I must have missed a trend back in the 90s, because everyone I told about this craft told me they'd done it when they were kids.  So yeah, I'm a bit behind the times over here.  After trying it, I can't believe I've never dyed anything before.  (Well, minus that time I got a dye-in-the-machine packet and attempted to turn some cream shirts black.  They came out dirty cream.  Sigh.)  Here's what I did...

I got a white tshirt from the charity shop and a pack of Dylon's China Blue fabric dye.  They challenged me to create a new look for spring and this colour is the perfect Easter shade.  I also picked up a plain tote bag from Tiger to have a go at dip dyeing while the tshirt was soaking.


Making sure the shirt was clean and damp, I secured some sections with elastic bands.  I covered my work table with a plastic bag, although (for a change) I managed not to get the dye everywhere.  I did wear old pjs just in case though, my track record for keeping clean is not great.  Next, I mixed up the dye as the packet instructs, adding salt and stirring it up.  I used chopsticks for this task since I didn't fancy risking my spoons!


The dye gets added to a basin of warm water and stirred up again.  I followed the guide to the letter and it was such an easy process.  I'd just recommend you carve out a reasonable amount of time for the task, as you're about to see...


The t-shirt goes into the basin and is stirred continuously for fifteen minutes.  I had gloves on anyway so I just used my hands to swirl it around in the dye.  Don't worry about how dark the water looks, the end result is much more pastel!  After the initial stirring, I gave it another mix every few minutes for the next forty five.  I also draped the bag part way into the water at this point and just let it sit over the side.


An hours worth of stirring later, the shirt is ready to emerge.  I removed the elastic bands and did an initial rinse under the tap in cold water, then I switched to the hot tap and added some detergent to give it a quick wash through.


The water got squeezed out and the finished items were hung on the radiator to dry off.  Aren't they pretty?  I want to refashion the tote into a drawstring bag, but I haven't had a chance to get near my sewing machine yet, so that's a project for another day.


Now, the tie dye was awesome, but I had to tamper with the design just a bit more to make it really festive.  I don't tend to suit high necks so, using a side plate as a template, I cut around the neckline to make it more flattering, and also removed the sleeves.  Some tiny pompoms and fabric glue got in the way too...


...and voila!  One totally refashioned tshirt, fit for spring time.  It's amazing how much of a difference a few small changes can make to an old white top, and I'll definitely be trying something else with the dye.  Tam very kindly took the dyeing pictures for me so I think I'll have to dye something for him next...

*I was gifted a couple of packets of the dye from Dylon to try out some crafts but all opinions (and effort!) are my own*

:)

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