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After "tying" your garment in the fashion that you want (there are vast
selections of tying patterns...and many booklets, etc.), you soak it for 10-30
minutes in a mixture of water and soda ash. This roughs up the fibers a bit,
so the dye is absorbed better. After wringing out the garment, place it on a
plastic covered surface and with the squirt bottles, you can direct the dye
where you want it. I like to use the primary colors to dye with, so that my
students can withness first-hand the mixture of primary colors into secondary
colors. (In dyeing, magenta, turquoise and yellow work best). Have A LOT of
paper towels to sop up any drips...just like paint, a muddy brown is made when
these three primary colors mix!
The garments are then placed in sealed plastic bags for 24 hours. The heat in
the bag sets the dye. Rinse with cool water until no dye is running. I hand
out washing instructions everytime I tie-dye..."wash alone in cold water the
first time, then with like colors...." When tie-dye is wet and it lays on
another piece of clothing, it can off-set and get dye onto unwanted places!
The dye itself comes in a powder form and it is mixed with table salt, water
and Urea. All of these things are available through art supply stores and mail
order. My most favorite is Dharma Trading Co. 1-800-542-5227 (no
affliation...etc.) catalog And also Pro Chemical & Dye
Remember...dye is much more effective on natural fibers. I'm a quilter and I
dye a lot of the fabric I use. I buy utensils and things like that at the $1
stores and I use gallon water bottles to mix the dye...once you try it, you'll
love it! I tie-dyed faculty tee-shirts one year and everyone still wears
them...no color fading! Any questions...e-mail me privately!
Lynn in NJ