Friday, January 29, 2010

new blog address

I've moved my blog to:

Please visit me there!!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Fabric dyeing; a rainbow in plastic cups

I found a fantastic site the other day dedicated to fabric dyeing.  What I loved most about the information was how simple the dyeing process was laid out- IF you follow the steps and prepare, prepare, and prepare some more.  I dyed a 9 color rainbow using fuschia, turquoise, and golden yellow with just scant amounts of dye powder and was able to easily dye 2 yards of fabric.

I was attempting to get a very mottled look for each piece so I tried different ways of scrunching or folding or twisting the fabric before placing it in the dye solution.  And while it was suggested to let the fabrics cure for 3 hours, I left them overnight (about 12 hours).

I love the results, but will certainly have to do this many times more to find some consistency.

So, what do you think?

Friday, January 22, 2010

chocolate stout beer anyone?

Micro breweries are a huge deal here in Asheville.  At most restaurants you can find a pretty big assortment of beers made in town by local breweries.  It kind of got Jay thinking he can brew his own beer too.  So, off he went to Asheville Brewers Supply right up the road.  He came home with a complete brew kit and was off and brewing. 

Here he is bottling his 2nd batch of beer.  This one is a chocolate stout.  It sure did smell great, but I just can't get myself to drink beer...

He got 44 bottles out of this batch!  Now he has to wait 2-4 weeks for it to be ready to drink.  Yum.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Red/Orange and Tangerine. Yummy!

Here's the batch of red/orange I mixed with tangerine. This time I used squirt bottles to apply the dye to the scrunched up fabric, alternating the red/orange and tangerine. After applying the soda ash mixture, I used a bit more of the red/orange concentrate and dripped it over the top of the piece. I love it!

Since I've got so much turquoise I'm going to try "overdyeing." I'm going to divide my yard in half and try some deep navy on one half and some lemon yellow on the other half. I'll let you know how it turns out.

I think I'm getting addicted to dyeing.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

dyeing fabric

Like the rest of the eastern half of the US, it's been mighty cold here in Asheville! We've been having temps under 32' for weeks now, with many days at less than 15', so I haven't rushed into the cold, dark basement before today. We've got a week of warm weather ahead of us so I finally got into the basement and dyed my first 3 batches of fabric. I only had enough dye to do some turquoise and deep navy, so I ended up doing 2 batches of the turquoise and one with turquoise and deep navy together. It was a lot of fun, once I got off the protective mask I wore while working with the dye powders. As I breathed, it fogged up my glasses and drove me crazy.

It was a lot easier and tons more fun than I thought it would be. After some stumbling around, I got a bit of a routine together. First, I scrunched up the fabric into the tubs. I set them aside and measured out my dye concentrate for each batch on my nifty new digital scale. Way Cool! Then I made up 3 separate pints of the soda ash mixture, one for each batch, and I was ready to apply the dye.

I applied the dye, scrunched the fabric a bit, added the soda ash mixture, pushed down on the fabric to be sure the soda ash got into the batch, put a lid on the bucket, and set aside.

Then I waited, and waited, and waited some more. I actually waited too long for one of the batches. I wanted to have 2 shades of turquoise, but I left the lighted batch to sit too long, and while my eye can tell there is a slight difference, you folks out there won't be able to see a difference. My favorite batch was the one I dyed half and half- turquoise and deep navy, and then I put some deep navy in drips on top of some of the turquoise. It came out great!

I'm going to try some red/orange and tangerine next. Yummy!!!