My name is Charlotte, sometimes known as Ms Lottie, occasionally as The Slightly Mad Quilt Lady. This is my blog, where you'll find me writing a lot about my quilting and textile arts and a little about my family's life in a small seaside town in New Zealand. Haere mai!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Hand Dyed Fabric - lighten up

I squeezed in a little fabric dyeing this weekend.  I need to get some lighter colours, some tints, to round out my hand dyed collection.  I also need to get some shades, which are blackened colours, but I discovered I've run out of black dye so that wasn't happening today.

They are very clear and bright.  I think I need to muddy some of my colours up a little to get some more interesting colours, but these definitely add a lighter aspect to my collection so I'm not unhappy with results.  I could also do another round of dilution in the orange and fuchsia, but I ran out of soda ash soaked fabric.

A brief explanation of how I dye my fabrics:
I take my prepared for dyeing fabric and rip it into fat quarter sized bits.
I write a number on the corner of each one for record keeping purposes and then put them in a bucket of soda ash solution, roughly 1/2 cup soda ash to about 8 litres of water.
I use procion mx dyes and I mix about 1 1/2 teaspoons of dye powder to one cup (250 mls) of water.
Then I pull out a piece of soaked fabric, wring it out and squirt on my dye.
If I want to make a mixed colour or dilution, I aim for about 1/5 cup (50 mls) of dye solution per fat quarter.
Leave it sitting for as long as you can (I often leave it overnight), then rinse and wash etc.
REMEMBER: use gloves, a mask when the dye powder is exposed, and utensils and pots reserved only for dye use.

The rest of the weekend has been taken up by the never ending housework, baking for lunch boxes, stitching with my quilting group (if you listened to my podcast yesterday, you'll know I got in a bit of hand binding), helping hubby build a deck outside our back door and painting another window frame (second to last one!!).

And now I think I'll settle in for the evening with my hand binding on my lap and a cup of peppermint tea and my hubby to keep my company.


  1. Such a busy weekend!! Love colours, very pretty.

  2. Very pretty colours, Charlotte! Oh to have more time in the day to do everything huh...


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