Sunday, 11 August 2013

Dyeing Day

Earlier in the year I had attended a Ferret workshop with CB and HW from Quirky Quilters. We had a great time and achieved a great deal over the weekend. I had used a piece  of my own hand dyed fabric and needed more to complete the quilt.

Original piece with quilting started on Ferret course

A week off work meant I had time to do some fabric dyeing. As I dye outside on the patio, nice warm weather is beneficial. I had plenty of chemicals made up, as QQ had held a fabric dyeing day, which I hosted, a couple of weeks ago. I had sorted the fabric, knew which colours and techniques I was going to use, next step fabric preparation. I wanted to tie-dye some backing fabric similar to the commercial piece I had used, so out came the elastic bands, pencil and ruler. I marked the circle centres at 250 mm triangular intervals and tied the circles from these centres with two elastic bands along each.

Tied fabric

I put the cloth to soak in soda solution for 20 minutes. I did two pieces like this using some old cotton sheets my sister gave me,they were approximately 2 x 1 metres each.

Soda soaking

I  arranged these pieces in two trays with the tied peaks on top and dyed them using royal blue poured all over the fabric and massaged to make sure the dye penetrated the fabric between the elastic bands, I only wanted the white fabric under the elastic bands. Then I used a plastic pipette to place black dye around the outer side of the circles, the elastic band at the widest point of the peaks.

Tied and dyed

The border and binding fabric (cotton poplin sheeting off-cuts from Empress Mills) was soaked in soda solution for 20 minutes and then arranged scrunched in a tray. Lemon yellow dye was applied to the cloth and left for 15 minutes. Royal blue dye was then poured down the sides of the tray to flood the bottom. There were four pieces in total, two at 2 meters x 300 mm and two at 2 meters x 150 mm.

Scrunched and dyed

I had some cotton sateen left over from lining some curtains so decided to try dyeing it. I thought indigo would be nice. I mixed this using one measure of magenta and two of turquoise. I poured the dye over the soda soaked fabric in a plastic bag. I then massaged the fabric and dye to get a fairly even colour over the fabric. I had a bit of black dye left from the tie-dying and put a few smaller pieces of soda soaked cotton sateen in a plastic bag with that, massaging them to get an even colour. As I was putting away my equipment I realised I should have used golden yellow as well as lemon yellow with the royal blue. I could have added it at this point but decided to wait and see the results. It looks like I will be adding the golden yellow as the colour is not quite right. All the trays were covered in plastic and left for about 40 hours. The dye stops working after 4 hours, I usually rinse and wash them after 24 hours, but I went out the next day so finished off the day after.

The results are always a surprise, even when you think you know what you are trying to achieve. The pictures don't do the colours justice even after fiddling with them in Photoshop, the closest is the tie-dyed picture.
Tie-dyed - fantastic much better than anticipated
Srunched - nice texture with this fabric, needs golden yellow added
Srunched - further along the strip
Indigo - gorgeous colour, softer texture than poplin but still evident 

1 comment:

  1. Oooooo Christine ...... I LOvE the outcome - cannot wait to see the pieces added to the Ferret work!!!!