A New Philosophy – Playing with Dye.

The recent sunny weather provided the perfect opportunity to dye and dry in the garden.

I have a basket of scraps, garments and some unfinished stitchery projects that need a make-over. My solution is to over-dye them.

Ready to Dye?

All you need is a Dylon Procion Dye, 500 grams of salt and a washing machine. The whole process is very therapeutic. Here are the textiles before they were dyed.

My aim was to unify the pattern and textures into one colour palette.

shirt ready to over dye

patchwork ready to over dye
ugly striped fabric ready to over dye
pieced hexagons ready to over dye

A New Philosphy

I met a mixed media artists years ago who had a wonderful philosophy. She’d had a rethink on how she viewed discarded and unwanted textiles.

In the corner of her sewing room lived a box of unloved projects, ugly fabrics and ‘mistakes’. Rather than throw them away she decided to change the way she viewed them.

Instead of being a box labelled ‘Unwanted’ she re labelled it ‘Experimental’. The fabrics came out and were over-dyed or cut up and re-pieced, some textured pieces were even painted with watered down emulsion paint!  Each piece had a new lease of life.

textiles after over dyeing


textiles after over dyeing
I see lots of new potential in these over-dyed fabrics. I’ll be cutting them up and re-piecing them in a future project.
I’ve also given a new lease of life to other textiles by rust dyeing them.
Do you have some unwanted textiles and fancy having a go?
Let me know what plans you have for them. Share your thoughts below.

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