I Love Dye Days!

I keep shouting out that I love, love, love dyeing and I really do. And now that I have a huge, good space, even on the hottest of days, I love to host dye days with all my friends. It seems to happen with uncanny coincidence that we DO end up working on the hottest day of the year, but it’s still all good!

Looks like the aftermath of a wild party, doesn’t it?

I get caught up with what I’m doing, though and don’t remember to take pictures…but I don’t have to wait forever to rinse these out so I can show you some of my finished products.

Some of my sheer “mystery fabric” that takes dye–it came out beautifully!

This is 3 layers of the sheers–still wet–but I hope to make something layered like this.

When we get together, it’s a group that varies from absolute beginner to could-be-professional. It’s actually a great mix, because when you have to explain something to a beginner, you are reminded of several things: precautions, equipment needs, why we do things a certain way, and also that all of us do things differently and that’s all right, too. The more experienced are always so generous with sharing their knowledge, and we all learn new things.

My style is pretty slapdash. I love to crumple, squish, jam and dump dye for unpredictable results. Some people want results they can repeat, so they take notes about each step and each drop of dye they use. One lady applies her dye a teaspoon at a time until she gets her colors spread all over her fabric. Another uses a squeeze bottle to paint on the dye in more controlled lines and patterns. It’s fun to hang fabric on a line or fence and drip dye on it. Spray bottles create great textured designs. We teach each other so much just by working in the same space.

Something that I have only tried once before is using soy wax resist. I waited until the “cool” of the evening (only 88°) and heated up the wax and applied it to my fabric. I used a sink mat, a sandwich cutter, a paintbrush, and a couple of lids to apply the patterns of wax. My hands got all covered in wax before I thought about my camera, so no process pics. I’m really airheaded when it comes to those pictures!  Anyway, it really makes a mess, but this is what I got.

The wax is still in here, so I don’t know what the final product will be.

This started out as the orange fire fabric from last week. It was a little too orangey-yellow for me, so I decided it would be the perfect candidate for this experiment. Can’t wait to see if looks significantly different after wax removal. Probably will not be able to do that today, but I’ll show you how it turns out when it’s ‘un-waxed.’

All in all, another great dye day. I’m thinking we need another one in August, when my busy-ness will back off a bit. In the meantime, I have no lack of projects and deadlines, so it’s time to get away from the computer and back to work!


13 thoughts on “I Love Dye Days!

    • My soy wax fabric made me very happy but since it was such a large piece, I need to find a better way to remove the way. I really love this process for creating marks on fabric beter than any painting or screen printing that I have done so far. I will be checking yours out and trying to figure out how they were made!


  1. Oh my the orangeyellow fiber opps, fabric looks so different, I looove it. I could see a dress in its future.


    • Isn’t it funny how that camera never seems important when you’re in the middle of something, but you sure wish you had pictures when you were done? My best guess is that mystery fabric is some type of cotton organza or maybe even crinoline. I know it is old, but it dyes well, barely frays, holds it’s shape and I’m having a lot fun playing with it!


  2. Fun fun fun! We have a group that gets together once in awhile to do dye days and it is always a great day. So much fun to see what everyone is doing! We did the soy wax once too, and that was interesting to see how it was different. Great way to add more layers to a piece of fabric!


    • I like the soy wax, I think, for creating layers much more than I like paint or screen printing. It intrigues me more than other methods but I’ve not done it much. We do have fun watching and learning from each other!


  3. So much fun!!! I am just wondering what you will use that sheer fabric for. Your soy experiment looks very interesting. I did some small pieces with soy, never thought about going outside.


    • Because that sheer fabric turned out just the way I wanted it to, I think it earned a spot in my underwater scene. The colors are perfect for it. I haven’t removed the soy wax from that piece, yet, probably next week. Can’t wait to see how that turns out. Busy-fun with the grandson on Fridays and Saturdays!


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