Oct 22, 2006

Now I've gone and done it

Dangit. I've been successfully resisting the lure of dyeing my own fabric for YEARS. Too many chemicals, too messy, too much work, I can just buy them, I like using commercial fabrics, blah, blah, blah.

Yeah, well, resistance is futile. Dyeing is too much fun and the results are too freaking yummy. And I can make the colors I want instead of hunting high and low. It's that last part that got me. I REALLY wanted an 8 step gradation of a bright clear pink (also a bright clear yellow, but I haven't gotten to that one yet). The most I could find was 4. And so 2 weeks ago on a Friday afternoon I got a crazy idea and this is the result:

Here are some of the individual pieces:

These are actually a little more mottled than I want for the particular project I have in mind. Just on general principle however, I completely love the mottled effect.

Much credit must be given to Melody Johnson and her wonderful blog post, The Lazy Dyer. Because, hey, I'm lazy too. I've read this post many times and it's the thing that convinced me that maybe I could dye fabric without the too many chemicals and the too much work.

The method I used to get the gradation came from the book Dyeing to Quilt, Quick Direct Dye Methods for Quilt Makers by Joyce Mori and Cynthia Myerberg. Nice simple methods similar to Mrs. Mel's and excellent step-by-step instructions for a wide range of gradations, color runs and different effects. I had every intention of buying this book until just now, when I looked it up on Amazon and discovered it's out of print and a used copy will set me back $85. I guess I'll keep checking it out from the library.


Diane said...

Ooh, such pretty pink! What a great result for your first dye attempt!

The Idaho Beauty said...

Warning!!! Fabric dyeing is like Lays potato chips - the commercial says, you can't eat just one. Well, once you start dyeing, you can't dye just one. That's how my friend and I ended up starting a hand-dyed fabric business. Too many combinations we wanted to try, and ended up needing to sell fabric to buy more supplies to keep experiementing! Ah, but I can think of worse habits...

And yes, it's that need for a specific color or gradation that sends many of us to try dyeing. Enjoy!

Rissa said...

Welcome to the collective. :-) The graduated colors came out great!