I'd been itching to dye something and had pinned so many DIY dye projects, including this gorgeous kelly green makeover.
|From Melancholy Smile, pinned to my DIY to Try Board|
When the famed Pinterest Challenge was announced, I decided to stop pining (and pinning) over DIY dye projects and dye my drab dress.
Since Sherry is a DIY dyeing extraordinaire, it was a fitting choice! I decided on dark green with a hint of teal, but prepared myself for any shade of green because I had read that dyeing can have some unexpected results.
|1, 2, 3|
Rit Dye has a formula guide on their website for mixing colours and I liked the look of dark green mixed with navy or teal (221 or 224 - top row). I meant to buy dark green and navy dye but I accidentally grabbed dark green and royal blue. I didn't realize until I was pouring the dye into the machine! At that point I abandoned the formula and poured both bottles in. I read that Rit dye can be lighter than expected, so I figured doubling the amount wouldn't hurt (instructions on their website say to use no more than two bottles at a time, so I was in the "safe zone").
- Washing machine (that isn't brand spanking new)
- Rit Dye (amount depends on weight of clothing)
- Rubber gloves
- 1 cup salt (helps achieve more intense colour with cotton, rayon, ramie, or linen)
- 1 tbsp. laundry detergent
- Bleach (for cleaning up)
- Centipede poking stick (may not apply to everyone - I encountered three during my dyeing extravaganza in the basement)
- I washed my dress in warm water, then set it aside.
- I filled the machine with enough hot water for the dress to be able to move around.
- I added one tbsp laundry detergent and the two bottles of dye as the machine was filling.
- I let the machine agitate, to mix up the dye, for a minute.
- I smoothed out and added the dress, then closed the lid (boy, does it splatter!)
- At the five minute mark, I added 1 cup of salt, diluted in warm water (the delay helps the dye process).
- The dress was in the dye for a total of 25 minutes because it rinsed and spun before I could stop it in time (30 minutes is the minimum).
- I rinsed the dress in warm, then cold water, until the water ran clear.
- Then I washed it again on the warm cycle, before rinsing it again.
At this point, the dress looked okay: dark green, not much blue, but good. EXCEPT that from the one time I wore this dress my crazy strong anti-perspirant chemically altered the fabric so there were lighter splotches under the arms.
Sexy. No worries! I went out and bought more dye. This time I purchased two bottles of navy. I figured a darker colour might cover the lighter areas better. And the green was seeming a bit military, anyway.
I repeated the process, but stopped and re-set the machine to the beginning of the agitation, so it was in the dye for about 40 minutes this time. I rinsed and washed the dress again. The underoo region looked better! The colour turned out really interesting - a deep, inky hue that's kind of navy but warmer. (The light spots aren't on the dress - it's the camera).
The stitches didn't take the dye and were really visible at the waist, but I always found this dress a little frumpy anyway, so I added a hand painted belt I bought in Hungary last year.
How to clean the washing machine (top-loading):
- I quickly wiped down any splatters with a soft cloth and soapy water.
- I poured in one cup bleach.
- Then I ran the washing machine - empty - on the hottest setting.
- I washed a load of dark laundry first, just in case.
- Read the instructions carefully - instructions vary from brand to brand.
- Double up the dye if you are using a dark dye, to get desired results.
- Be flexible about the results & don't dye anything precious.
- Be sure to wash new items well to remove sizing (although you wash everything before dyeing).
- Be wary of dying clothing that may have come in contact with chemicals like perfume, anti-perspirant, etc.
- Use the hottest water you can because it helps the dye take
- For the first few washings of a dyed item, wash it by itself in cool water with small amount of detergent that does not contain bleach.
- Always wash a dyed item with items of a similar colour.
- Be prepared for an item to fade over time, here's a really good example.
- Note that thread, zippers, and other parts may not take the dye
I'm linking up my newly navy dress to these Pinterest parties!