Friday, March 1, 2013

Hand Dyed Silk Velvet

I know, I know.  We promised this post would be a video.  Due to technical difficulties, we are just posting pictures this month.  Sorry!  We'll figure things out by next art group....

from Julie's blog
What an experiment art group was this month!  After eating some AMAZING chinese food our current fearless President Heidi brought, we mixed up 16 colors of dye and had a blast dipping and dripping and coming up with the most beautiful colors!!  

Julie was our resident expert for dyeing.  She's besties now with all the great people at Dharma (the site we ordered all the dyes from) and walked us through the process.  By the way, they have great customer service and will do their best to answer any questions you have about their dyes and the dyeing process.
what a mess!

To begin, you will need:

  • a plastic tub full of warm water (to pre-soak your velvet)
  • plastic bowls for the dyes (however many you are doing) labeled with name of dye
  • dye
  • RUBBER GLOVES (just take a look at the only person who didn't wear gloves at art group--she's the one walking around with blue hands! Deb)
  • paint brushes for each dye
  • another plastic tub with water for rinsing (you could also just use your sink)
  • a microwave (this should be a junker microwave-not something you'll use for food ever again)
  • paper towels
  • ziplock baggies (size depends on how big your pieces of velvet are)
  • Synthropol (you can buy it here) to wash velvet in before and after
Deb's blue hand!

This is a VERY messy project!  Lots of dripping.  So we would suggest you do this in a garage or put something down on the floor to catch those drips.  

1.  Mix up dyes according to directions.

2.  Put all the velvet in your tub of warm water.  We used white silk rayon velvet.  Julie suggests washing the velvet before and after you dye with a product called Synthropol.  It helps stay the dye.  The tub should have water that stays clear and clean.  We had some issues with people having dye on their gloves and dipping their hands in the clean water.  The dye will color your white velvet, so be careful!

3.  You can either paint the dye on the velvet or immerse it in the bowl of dye depending on the effect you would like.  Because we had so many people doing this at the same time, our bowls of dye eventually had other dyes mixed in.  This was actually a happy accident!  Some of our best colors were from this.  BUT we can't replicate it!  Rats!  Also, the longer your velvet sits in the dye, the richer and darker it becomes.  If you want your velvet to have a washed-out aged look, just put it in for a second and then take it out and rinse it quickly.

4.  For a more interesting aged look, put the velvet in one dye, rinse it out, then dip it into another dye.  For example, I love a velvet I dipped in a teal blue, rinsed it out, then put it in a saffron color.  BEAUTIFUL!

5.  Rinse it out in your bucket of water or under the faucet in the sink and squeeze out the excess water.  If you want a really deep, rich color, don't rinse out in water.  Just squeeze out excess dye in bowl.

6.  Put in ziplock bag and close, leaving a little opening in closure.

7.  Microwave.  The time on this is going to depend on your microwave.  We put ours in for about 45-50 seconds.  Pull out and test to see if it's dry.  Put back in for more time until dry.
Lovely Lorraine

VOILA!  You have some beautiful velvet to use in your next project.  What will you use it for?  We're thinking of using it for a pincushion class we're doing in March.
from Julie's blog

Thanks for coming to Art Group this month Art Groupies!!  Leave us a comment and tell us about your successes (or not) with dyeing velvet.  We'd love to hear from you!


No comments:

Post a Comment