Alright, so I totally thought that the dip-dying-fad-train had left the station until I was in, wait for it...Anthropologie (gasp of surprise!) a coupla weeks ago. And that's when I saw this super summery gingham blouse with a lovely violet dip dye. Suddenly I had visions of myself enjoying summer days filled with estate sales, lazy lunches and crafty afternoons in this lovely little button-up. That is until the $79 price tag bit me like a "It Ain't Summer Yet!" snake. At which point I turned on my heel, got myself to Goodwill, snagged this gingham Target blouse and dip dyed my own. Take that, you grouchy gingham (did I just have an imaginary convo with a shirt? I think I did).
Since we're engaging in imaginary conversations, here's what I'm guessing Anthro girl is sayin' about me as she looks on in $79-less wonder: "Oh my gawd, Becky. Look at her shirt. It is so not $79. She must be one of those Anthro-knock-off girls." (Does this reference show my age? Not gettin' it? Go here.)
Turns out I'm completely addicted to dip-dying. Who knew? I found this to be a very easy, albeit messy, craft. I've now breathed new dip-dyed life into three garments (I'll share the third next week). The key is using the best dye you can get your mitts on...
Please, I beg of you, do not use that grocery store dye! You can pick Procion dyes up in every color imaginable at Dharma Trading Company. You'll also need:
- Soda Ash (helps your fabric absorb and retain the dye)
- Non-iodonized salt Hit the grocery store for this one but read the label. Most salt is iodonized.
For the most clear and concise of dying directions, I recommend those on the Dharma website. You can find it here.
Because I was only dying part of the shirt, I had to go a different route that what was written in the directions. So here's how I went about my dip dye:
- Wash your shirt. Because it's dirty and smells of thrift store. Or, if it's new, wash it to get all of those new clothing chemicals out that might prevent the dye from dying.
- Double bag your shirt. If you don't want any dye on the top of the shirt, bag it accordingly.
- Prepare your dye bath. You know, light some candles, pour a nice glass of wine...oh, wait, I said dye bath. In that case, dissolve your amount of dye in a small amount of water and add that to your large bucket of water. Pour in your measured amount of salt and mix until dissolved.
- Add your shirt to the bath. Because your want a gradation of color, you'll want to soak your shirt in certain time intervals. For the top part, I soaked the shirt, for 5 minutes; pulled it out a little bit and soaked for 10; a little more, soaked for 20 and the bottom I soaked for 50 because I completely forgot about it sitting outside.
- Add the soda ash. Dissolve that stuff in a cup of hot water and add to the dye bath as your shirt is soaking.
- Rinse and repeat. Rinse that shirt in hot water until it runs clear. Then rinse it some more in cold water. Throw it in the dryer and, viola! Dip dying done!
Yay, shirt complete! By the way, notice the couple drops of blue dye near my right arm in the back photo? Oops. Did I say "double bag it"? Make the triple.
And since I had that big blue dye bath, I thought I'd experiment with this super old Forever 21 dress. My original plan was to simply dye the midsection using this vintage dress (third one down) as my inspiration.
So this time, I bagged the ends, folded it in half and let that soak in the dye bath for 30 minutes. When it was finished, I found it to be just a little boring. So I mixed up some fuschia dye and this time just soaked the ends. And what you see below is the result.
Super easy and on-the-cheap craft. And I think it will be the perfect thing to wear when introducing the cool colors to the kids. Right after I slap that 'roid cream on my knees.