9 July 2013

Summer Party with Confetti & Tea

There are so many fun things out there to try that I don't know where to turn. When I opened the June/July issue of Quilting Arts Magazine I immediately found three things I wanted to try. I've tried two of them now (confetti dyeing, and discharging soy wax resisted fabric), and I'm sure I'll try sand painting very soon. It's one big fabric design summer party at the moment.

Today I'll show you the results from the confetti dyeing I tried recently, as well as the beginning of some tea dyeing I was inspired to try after reading India Flint's book Eco Colour.

Confetti dyeing is a ridiculously easy and fun dyeing technique, if you have dye pigment in powder form. You soak a piece of cloth in soda solution, place the fabric on a surface, arrange the fabric into folds if you want to, and then sprinkle dry dye powder on top with the help of a mesh. Batch as normal, rinse and wash. For more detailed information on the technique, please refer to Carol R. Eton's article in the June/July issue (#63) of QAM, pages 26-28.

On the first sample I sprinkled Procion MX dye on a flat piece of fabric:

On the next sample I did exactly the same thing as in the first sample, but then I used a pipette to drip soda solution over the fabric. When the liquid spread over the fabric, it moved the dye around and created blurry starbursts:

On the third sample I pushed the fabric into folds before sprinkling on the dye:

Pretty wild stuff. Another reason I was very pleased to see that it worked was because I used some old dye that had been lying around for ages. I've heard that Procion MX dye shouldn't be kept too long, but at least these dyes have aged gracefully. There's definitely nothing wrong with the colour saturation here.

Finally, let me just show you a dyeing experiment in progress. I read the section on solar dyeing in India Flint's book and decided to try it there on the spot. So I made some tea with a bunch of old tea bags that I've saved for tea dying. Then I accordion folded a piece of fabric, and in the folds I snuck in more tea bags, this time a herbal tea that produces a red liquid.

I crammed the fabric into a glass jar, poured tea on top, sealed the lid and put the jar in a sunny spot. Now I -only- have to wait a month before I can pull out the fabric and see what's happened. Luckily I have a lot going on at the moment, so a month will pass in no time.

Thanks for visiting my blog! There will be more fun adventures in the world of fabric design soon.
- Annika

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