Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Selecting Fabric Dyes

By Marjorie J McDonald

After you have picked out the sort of fabric you wish to dye you will be able then move forward with the dyeing process. Each kind of fiber you want to dye has to have different dyes and different techniques for the fabric dyeing process. I use Procion MX dyes so will be covering them here.

I have divided up the fabric dyeing steps for my projects into sections that might be done separately when you have time (split over a couple of days if you like) or all in a row. I actually have things that I do that only take a short while at the beginning of each day so I can see the progress without having the projects use up time from my to do list of regular activities that must to be looked after on an everyday basis.

I do treble dyed fabrics that I use for quilted clothes or to strip into narrow pieces that I do rag weaving with for my garments. The most common fabric I use is cotton nonetheless , I also use silk and linen. For these fibers I use the Procion MX dyes and have developed in depth recipes for my use so I will produce similar colors everytime if I'm doing a short production run for a store.

If someone would like a garment but the store is out of the customers size, I can create the fabric and the garment to fit the buyer in the exact same color range the client liked and ordered. The customer knows it won't be the exact pattern but the range of colors that they are selecting so they're OK with the one of a kind results.

Then decide what size pieces of fabric you need for the projects you hope to use your dyed fabrics in. That could be for applique, pieced quilting or for making garments. The piece size will give you what you have to use to start the project. Once you know the kinds of fabrics you wish to dye and the types of dyes that are the right ones to be used, you can gather your fabrics, dyes and equipment and you are almost ready to start in on an exciting and fun experience.

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