Saturday, September 9, 2017

At the Dye Pots Again - More Ice Dyeing!

Well, frankly I think I outdid myself with this last batch of dyeing!!  Too bad I don't keep good records of what precisely I did!!  I would love to recreate some of the effects I got.  I will share what things I did differently however.  This piece was one of the larger ones -- 23 inches square and is my favorite.  Altogether I made 72 small pieces (of course one is missing again!!), 6 of the larger ones and about 10 yards of drop cloths.  The drop cloth fabric is useful for borders on the quilts from the same "dye pot". 

Of course I am not using buckets.  I use 6 smallish plastic containers with a grate in each (from Walmarts for cooling cookies).  I put a scrunched drop cloth, several layers of squares all folded but randomly placed, and then another scrunched drop cloth on top.  I spread a layer of ice making sure everything is covered and then I drop dye powder on.  I always wear a dust mask for this step.  All this fabric has been soaked in a soda ash solution prior to dyeing.  I have pins in the folded ones to make sure they don't get unfolded.  I remove the pins before dyeing.

The following are most of the pieces that I dyed in this batch of the smaller pieces -- 11 1/2 x 11 1/2 inches.  I tried to group some of the ones that were similar together in the rows in each bunch of 12.  I usually keep a few and put the rest up for sale but wanted to keep 50 of this bunch so guess will just have to raise the prices when I go to sell these and they will be hard to part with!!

 The bottom row on each of this one and the previous one were an experiment to just use New Black and the Neutral Gray and one color -- I chose Mixing Red.  The smaller ones were okay but the larger ones were not so good.

The top row in this bunch I believe was my experiment in primaries but instead of doing lines like I usually do, I dropped spoonfuls of each color kind of randomly over the top.  I think I may try this again as they turned out to be my favorites for the most part.

 Again the third row was the black, gray and red.

At least one of the batches used Blue/Violet and I think these might be those in the second row.  Not so sure I will use this mixed dye again.  Purple is everyone's favorite.

 Just a random bunch with some I really liked!

These I think will go on sale soon.  They were okay
I think these will go on sale as well.  We have been grouping some together and really need to get some kits together.

These next two were also the bigger 23 inch square size.  I am going to do more of these in the next batch.

The next few are blowups of some of my favorites from the first few bunches above

 The next two are what I call my "drop" cloths.  I place scrunched fabric both on top of the fabric that is folded for dyeing and on the bottom (so I won't get the lines from the grate).  These two are the ones that I place on top.  Notice that they are fairly light and lots of white  This is because they take the brunt of the melting ice,

 These next two are from the bottom.  There is some variation in the fabric I used but there is more migration of color in these pieces.

 This is a very large tote bag which I am going to call my "show and tell" bag as it is 18 x 18 x 12 inches.  I made it out of some leftover blocks which I had made into a quilt and a jacket many years ago.  It is lined also with more of my hand dyes.  I used a stiff interfacing on the outside and a fusible fleece on the lining so it pretty much stands up on its own.  However, stitching those French seas through all those layers -- not pretty and several broken needles later....
The side view.  I made these blocks using lots of scraps of my hand dyes from long ago.

I just finished folding pieces so I can get them ironed hopefully tonight.  I am going to dye a few more of the larger pieces in this next batch so it will be 12 bigger pieces and 48 of the smaller ones.  
After the last batch, I was swearing off doing the smaller pieces as they are so much work -- the folds have to be very precise for this to work.  After seeing the results, I decided I would do a few more!


irene macwilliam said...

As usual they are brilliant and fascinating. I do not know how you can bear to sell any of them. Most give the ice dyeing a go. Thank you for all the info you impart to us your readers. Irene in Northern Ireland

Elizabeth said...

Thanks for your nice words!! I love doing it but a lot of the trick is in the prep work, folding and ironing the fabric precisely, especially with the small ones. I also use pfd fabric (Kona) which has a lower thread count although is a very firm hand. I may try some silk one of these days as well. I think some people also put too much ice on. It does take a lot of dye though!

Lori S said...