Dyeing Days…again

How many posts about dyeing and dye results can you stand?! You’ll have to endure one more, though, because that’s pretty much all I’ve been doing lately.

I really liked my first tray dyeing results so I had to do it again with different colors. Love, love, love what I got.

However……………..the next experiment in tray dyeing is overdyeing the results for even MORE texture! I’m thinking navy or black to get some dark, dark lines in here. And the weather remains hot and humid, which is very good for dyeing!

I think I am genetically incapable of subtle colors or using just a few. I pre-soaked in soda ash, as usual, and hung it up wet. Then I started squirting color on it and letting it run down. My intention was to only use a couple of colors, but I. Just. Couldn’t. Stop. Myself. Every color in the rainbow–again! After a few minutes I realized that all the colors were flowing too quickly to the bottom, so I flipped the fabric and re-hung it. Just left it to cure in the heat and this is what I got.

Pretty, isn’t it? But it may end up in the tray for some dark line texture, too. Can it make it bad? Possibly, but I’m experimenting because it’s fun. And anything that ends up really awful becomes a candidate for another process experiment. Nothing is ‘wasted’ when you experiment this way.

And when do you use these fabrics, you ask? I don’t have a huge backlog of dyed fabrics and most of what I have I’ve been using as samples for classes. I’ve combined them with batiks for a couple of quilts and let people use them cut up as squares in some classes. The ones I’m working on now are definitely going to be used this fall and winter when I’m settled in and have no traveling plans for a couple of weeks.

And not everything is a happy dye product. I routinely use fabric for drop cloths and clean up at the end of a dye session with them. Sometimes you get a happy result

  and sometimes you get some real dawgs……

As if I ever needed an excuse to go back to the dye buckets…but these are great candidates! Drop cloths are always better when there is a lot of ‘droppage’ at the mixing table!

This week is a prep week for teaching at the Ann Arbor Quilt Guild event, Quilting Unlimited, this weekend. I’m teaching a dyeing class–surprise! I think I have enough samples…I’m also teaching a curves class and a quilting class so I need to be sure I have everything organized. I am in 2 different buildings and 3 different classrooms, so it’s mostly for my own convenience necessity. I’m so looking forward to it, though.

I love to teach! But there may not be much blogging while I’m doing it. Results will be talked about next week, though!


4 thoughts on “Dyeing Days…again

  1. I teach fabric dyeing also.. and every where that I have read one has to leave it wrapped damp for at least 24 hours… We also have the hot weather, and would love to have it dry, so that there is not much mixing of the colors,, so I would not always get “brown”… Have you found any color loss when washing, after drying in the air?
    Love the brilliant colors.


    • I’m not a big fan of leaving it to dry in the hot weather. Even though the heat is supposed to process the dye, there does seem to be quite a bit of color loss. I think next time I’ll lay it on plastic and cover with plastic to dry more slowly…I can pile up quite a few layers that way, too. I used up a few ounces of dark dye and overdyed a couple pieces yesterday, so I’ll try to get those posted and then I really do have to stop for this week! It’s a hobby that I’m in love with, though, so it’s hard to stop asking ‘what if?’ and put the toys away!


    • You just need to come here so I can show you how to do it, then you’ll have an unending supply! Or I *suppose* you can buy the Tray Dyeing book(Morgan & Benn)…but getting together would be much more fun!


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