Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Synthetic Dyeing

I love using cold reactive dyes. The vibrancy of colour and the ease of use is wonderful. I've never really had much need to dye synthetics so haven't been bothered to go down that dyeing path.

Having said that I do like to experiment. I had some thickened dye left over from another project and decided to see if I could get the same vibrancy of colour on synthetics as I do from plant fibres and silk.

Great idea except that I couldn't find any in my stash. After much hunting I found 2 pieces, one a piece of nylon lace and the other was small piece of lining.

I soaked them in soda ash first. Then I used a sponge brush to apply the thickened dye.

I let them dry and then heat set them. (Thickened dye is needs to be heat set).

I then washed them a couple of times to check for colour fastness. I am very happy with the colour of the lace. The lining is pale, not as pale as the photo but pale just the same. I'm going to have another go as I didn't check that the thickened dye had penetrated the fibres before heat setting.

Could be that the dye just isn't suitable for the fabric. But now I know that I can dye nylon lace quite successfully with thickened dye.

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