Quilt Testers In Action

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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Another Dyeing Day

Fun first or business? Well, on the principle of always eat dessert first, 'cause you never know, here's some fun. Today my fabric dyeing session was interrupted by the Neighborhood Lion. He found a creature he hadn't seen before.


Of course he had to attack it, he's an amazing predator.


A good bite, to do the creature in. Ginny also likes to chew these shoes, must be the plastic tastes good.


The creature is completely conquered.


And now, it's time to stretch out next to the conquered foe, and relax.


Or maybe have a bath. Soon after this, he accidentally rolled down the hill while trying to get the other side. There is never a video camera when you want one!


Amazingly he did not end up with dye on himself.

And now, the business. I have been dyeing fabric in several batches over the last couple of weeks. The colors are wonderful when the fabric comes straight from the dye bath. But after rinsing and washing, I am ending up with colors that are much more pale and dull than what I started with. Like this:


and this:


They are nice, but not what I thought I was getting. So I am wondering:
  1. Are my dye mixes not concentrated enough, or
  2. Are the minerals in my water affecting how well the dye attaches to the cloth?
Does anyone out there with dyeing experience have any hints for me?

Another problem that I am having is too much white on fabric that I pole wrap and dye (sort of shibori -type ).


This fabric is not as dark as it appears in the picture. I wanted it for dark water, reflecting yellow trees. So I added some dye this afternoon.


I'll show you the results tomorrow. Hopefully, it will be closer to the look I'm going for.

Have a great day, and watch out for those lions. You never know when they might attack your shoes!

7 comments:

Katie :o) said...

Love the neighborhood lion and the conquored creature! When we tried dying our own fabrics, we had the same faded colors problem. I wonder if popular dye kits are less potent than commercial dyes?

Lisa said...

I love that little neighborhood lion! He's funny. He seems to think he's the mayor, as we say about my sister's dog, running the whole neighborhood. Then again, lion is the king of the jungle.

I like the faded fabric. My two cents, for what it's worth.

The Fab Furs said...

Know nothing about dye strengths-but you do have one of the best neighbors! Interesting that both the dandy lion and Ginny like your shoes, but Ginny probably would prefer dandelions.

bunnits said...

A delightful post.

I can just see Neighborhood Lion rolling down the hill.

Your dye work is lovely.

cloquinette said...

Hey! I don't know what dye kit you're using, or pretty much anything about dying fabric, but do you have a mordant, to help the dye stick? It was so nice to have kitty pictures!! I've been pining for my cat since I got back to school.
Good luck with the dying!!
Anna

Michelle May said...

Have never dyed fabric, but you know I think faded is fabulous so to me there is no problem only beauty! :)
I love the lion.
xx, shell

Talin's Corner said...

I think the dyed fabrics look gorgeous.