I’m getting ready to do a holiday craft show in Brooklyn. I printed up about 30 Brooklyn Bridge tea towels for the show and now I’m dyeing scarves. I love dyeing scarves. The silk just takes the dye so well and the colors are extraordinary. I usually dye each one at least twice and it’s all intuition. I’m in the moment and I’m grabbing and folding and simmering in my big dyepot on the stove in my kitchen. The windows get all foggy. I always start using my kitchen utensils so they become forever my dyeing utensils. I used to use procion but last year I started using acid dyes and I am in love with the results on silk. I urge you to give it a try! I use citic acid and vinegar to set the dyes. I really don’t mind the smell of vinegar, I make my own cleaning solution with it too so I’m pretty used to the smell and it reminds me of clean.
So I started with white scarves. I unfolded them and put them in the washer on hand wash cycle, hot water and a bit of synthrapol. I do this to ensure there are no greasy finger marks or stuff left from the processing on the scarves to interfere with the dye.
I used flat crepe, chiffon, crepe de chine and charmeuse silk. I took about 7 or so and just lay them gently in the pot with a touch of magenta and got this. I really took a lot of time to make sure the dye was completely dissolved before I poured it in. I have been disappointed in the past because of spots from dry specs of dye hitting the fabric and just staying there.
Then I took each one and folded it up itajime style and redyed.
I’m saving the chiffon to do some felting with today.
The black one was never pink, I knotted it loosely and started with gray and built up the color to black. The light blue was also from white, rolled and bound with picture hanging wire. Wish I had some pictures of that to show you. It looked really cool.
A good days work.