Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dyeing Away

Things are either very quiet or swamped here.  Right now....Lets just say the gators are moving in.  Games out of town, Lola home from school, DH with some very hard days at work, and chauffeuring myself and MJJR all over.

On April 4th, the local library had a serial dilution dyeing class.  This library has different dyeing classes including: ice dyeing, painting or stamping, texturizing, and the serial dilution dyeing.  This was my first experience with the serial dilution dyeing.  I have taken the other classes before.
The biggest issue with hand dyed fabric is bleeding.  The dyes need to be intense to get the beautiful colors, but must be fully set and rinsed out to not leach dye onto the nearby fabrics.  Remember my bleeding experience.  Don't want to relive that one!

So it was time to set those dyes.  It should be said that during my "bleeding experience" a product line was discussed.  Synthrapol is a product to remove dyes that have bled.  Retayne is a product to set dyes to keep them from bleeding.  These products were not used in the "bleeding experience".  
So back to my current hand dyed fabric.  There is 30 bags of the serial dilutions and another 10 or so bags of "why not try that".
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I started with 5 bags of the serial dilutions by rinsing out the fabric with cold water and placing them back in the same bag with white vinegar.  Then I stopped…out of white vinegar.  Went to Sam's Club…bought 2 gallons of white vinegar ($3.56).  Next day, rinsed out more and loaded up a total of 15 of the serial dilutions with vinegar.  Headed over to the LQS and purchased a small bottle of Retayne for $3.  The bottle of Retayne states "drain excess dye and add to fabric".  Well, blew that didn't I.  Soooo. Rinsed vinegar out and soaked fabric of similar colors in a bucket of water and Retayne.  Rinsed out the Retayne and hung them out to dry.  Here is the first set.
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The next set is from those after the Retayne was purchased.  The fabric was squeezed out and placed in a bucket of water and Retayne, with like colors together.  It is funny, the water/Retayne starts to turn opaque as you add the fabric to it.  Some of the color leaves but most of it stays.  After the Retayne soak, the fabric was placed back in the bag with vinegar.  The next day….rinsed and hung out to dry.
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Hanging the small pieces of fabric on the pea pod trellis worked great.  The peas are planted and are just starting to break the surface.  Mind you, it snowed today.  What month is this anyway???  April (snow) showers, will it ever bring May's flowers. 
These fabrics are hoping to combine with the fabric exchange neutrals.  My inspiration.  Baby Waves by Kaye Wood.
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Just Another Quilter


  1. Wow the colors are amazing. I love all the variations in color. Can'twait to see this hand dyed fabric in your quilt.

  2. Love the colors, but I'm not sure I understand it all. Are you totally satisfied the colors will not bleed again? I'm ready for Spring too! Yet we had frost in North Texas this morning! ---"Love"

  3. What beautiful colors! Seems like a lot of work, but I think worth the effort. I'll be looking forward to the quilt you make with these fabrics.

  4. The fabrics look beautiful and I wish our library had classes like that! Thanks for sharing.
    Freemotion by the River Linky Party Tuesday

  5. Hi, Jane! You are the Jane that was a tech at same lab as me, I hope. Cathy L from I.T. here. Didn't know you were a quilter. Saw your name and blog in MVQG newsletter in regard to 5 inch swap. I read the newsletter even tho' I don't belong to the guild. Love your quilts. I make a few myself. I see you visit some of the same blogs I do. Love the dyed fabrics.

    Sane, Crazy, Crumby Quilting