Tuesday, September 15

Wooly Dyeing Results!

Two weeks ago, my grandson, Jacob, and I had fun painting wool and cotton fabrics. This past week, I used fabric dye and had some fun. Every day, I tried a different color. The dyes I used are by Dylon and can be purchased at fabric and/or craft stores. I found mine at Hancock Fabrics and at Hobby Lobby. Each store carried different colors.

I could hardly wait to get started. I assembled my supplies including several cuts of the precious white wool that I ordered last spring from the Amana Colonies.
I started with Ocean Blue first. The package said to use rubber gloves and I did - most of the time. :-) I wasn't dyeing a large item such as sheets so I adjusted the dyeing process to suit my needs. I also adjusted the amount of salt that the package directions recommend. Does the salt make the dye set? or what is it's purpose?
I filled my little bucket with warm water and added about a third of the package of dye and about 1-1/2 tablespoons salt and stirred it well. Then I took rubber bands and bundled up the wool with rubber bands. This is like tie-dyeing. When the dye soaks into the bundle of fabric more liquid is absorbed in some areas than others and you get an interesting effect.
I placed my bundle carefully in the dye bath. The directions said I should be dyeing in a stainless steel sink. I don't have one. This is the deep sink in my laundry room and it's very white. Not wanting to stain it, I set one bucket inside the other so the dye bucket didn't leave a ring in the sink.
As directed, I stirred the wool in the dye bath. I let it set for about 30 minutes and stirred it some more. I left each one overnight and drained off the dye in the morning. Then I rinsed the wool in cool water and washed in the washing machine as directed on the package. Out of curiousity, I put a couple white items in each wash to see if the dyed wool would "bleed". Not one bit of dye of any color did any "bleeding". I tumble dryed each color then pressed them and ..........

.....here are some of the interesting colors that resulted. The fuschia color is what resulted from the tulip red dye. I wasn't able to get a true red as it was sold out. I am also missing a brighter green so when I get those, I'll be doing some more dyeing. The three pieces on the lower left were "overdyed", in other words..........tied up and dyed in one color, washed and dried and then tied up and dyed in another color. To add even more interest to these pieces, I'm going to do some fabric painting on some sections. I plan to use these pieces in various penny rug and wool applique projects for I see in them - flowers, leaves, birds, and so much more!! You'll see a little bit of all of these in lots of projects in the next several months.
Dyeing and painting fabric - whether cotton or wool - is fun and you can end up with some really beautiful pieces. The only down-side is that it's pretty messy and it is a bit time-consuming. It's definitely worth the time and trouble!
Let me know if you give this a try.


Pat said...

You got some really good results with your fabric-dying adventures! Thanks for sharing.

Crispy said...

Great pieces Sandi. I'd rather buy my hand dyes then make them hee hee.


Kaye said...

Looks and sounds very interesting, but I can't even begin to try a new project now. You did a great job and thanks for sharing!

Needled Mom said...

I love the pretty colors of the wool. Sounds like you had a lot of fun doing it too.

Did you order your wool from the woolen mill in Amana? I love visiting there and have several really nice pieces from the woodshop.

The food is also fabulous there.

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Wow I would love to try dying fabric. I painted with Setacolor, but it's not for a quilt that would be washed.

ooglebloops said...

This is on my list of things to try - I have dyed fabric with flowers- irises, etc - but it did not turn out like I thought!!! LOL

Colleen said...

I have enjoyed reading your wool dying instructions. You have added to my interest in wool applique, I would like to over dye some wool from clothing from thrift stores. Have you done that? Any tips???

Mary Lou Weidman said...

Wow, loved this blog entry-I would love to do bright tuquoises, bright reds and acid greens, all mottled.....you pieces are beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
©SEA 2001-2011