Monday, September 3, 2012

Dye-ing For A New Look

So I got a great deal on some plain white ribbon, but the more I look at it, the more I am faced with the reality that I need very little plain white ribbon for my crafts...
Then I had my 'a-ha!' moment. I can dye it as I need to for the colors I want.
Here are a few tips to home-dying fabric ribbon
  1. Make sure the ribbon is pre-washed to remove any sizing chemicals it is packaged with. I use dishsoap and hot water, and just hand clean it in the sink.
  2. Unless you want to also risk dyeing your hands and work area, wear gloves and set down newspaper
  3. I prefer to dye things in disposable or craft-use-only tupperware, so I don't have to worry about staining
  4. Make sure your ribbon is totally submerged in the dye. Stir it around with the back of a paintbrush.
  5. The longer you leave something in the dye, the darker the color it becomes.
Now, a few methods for dyeing ribbon
  • Tea Staining- soak two plain teabags in a cup of boiling water until the water cools. Strain the bags, and microwave the water until it boils again, then drop in the ribbon. *You can use fancy tea flavors like berry or green tea for different effects.
  • Coffee Dyeing- stir a heaping spoon of instant coffee into a cup of boiling water. You can add ribbon right away.
  • Kool-Aid Dyeing- *use the envelopes, NOT the jar or canister! Add one envelope of Kool-Aid to a cup of boiling water and stir, You can add ribbon immediately. Kool-Aid comes in just about every color- red, orange, yellow, blue, and purple. Yellow Kool-Aid requires two packets, as it it a very pale color. Green can be mixed with yellow and blue.
I don't make anything that would need washing, so I don't worry about dye fading in the washer. If you are going to make wearable crafts, I suggest investing in actual dye.

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