Dyeing fabric with household items
Because of recent events, it´s pretty much impossible to just go out and buy some dye. Or, if you are like me, you don´t like predyed felt or can´t really afford normal fabric dyes. So I went through my house and searched for alternative solutions like tea or even food coloring.
I used white craft felt for my material, but I´m sure you can do the same thing with thread, cotton or even aida. Just take a little piece and test it out beforehand, I put them in dry and without any additional fabric medium.
I wanted to test out how much you can intensify the color and used 100ml (3 fl.oz) of hot or boiling water as the medium, in some cases it didn´t really made a difference (like Fennel tea), but see for yourself :)
Here are my results:
So the “natural” dyes like tea, coffee and ink are not really intense, but make for nice off-white shades and earthy tones. They didn´t change the texture of the felt, don´t smell weird or anything but will probably fade, if you should wash them again.
On the other side, we have food coloring (I used Wilton), which made very bright and nice shades, but also made the fabric a bit stiff and ruins every surface you put it on. It´s still the best alternative if you want bold colors with wide range, but make sure it dissolves fully before you put anything in it.
Acrylic paint wasn´t really a failure, it can make a nice marble look, but also leads to dark, stiff rings at the outer edge of the fabric (which you can just cut off). Probably my least favorite technique.
I will use these sheets as a reference in the future, I hope they are also useful to you :) Just scale them up or experiment for yourself! Stay safe.
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