Fill the dye pot halfway with water and add the tea bags. For this instruction, I used 15 tea bags. Bring the liquid to a boil and then reduce to a low heat for at least 15 minutes. When you've achieved a lovely brown hue, insert your wetted fabric into the dye pot. The amount of time it will take to dye all your clothes is completely dependent on the darkness of the color you want. For a light yellow, blue, or green color, go for less than 10 minutes; for an orange, red, or dark purple, allow up to 30 minutes for the color to set.
After cooling, remove the fabric from the dye bath and rinse in cold water. Then hang up to dry.
That's it! Your dress is now colored like the tea itself!
If you'd like to try another method, here's how: Pour the hot tea into a measuring cup. It should be just shy of full. So, if your cup holds 5 ounces, pour in 4 ounces of hot water and keep left over in case you need it for something else. Now, using the same amount of tea as before, make a new cup of hot water. Add the tea to the hot water and stir well. Let the mixture sit for five minutes, then dip the item you would like to color into the solution. Allow it to cool slightly, then wash as usual.
For each cup of water, use around 1 tea bag. For my pot of water, I used ten tea bags. Bring the water to a full boil with the tea bags and 1/4 cup of salt. The salt aids in the establishment of the tea dye on the cloth. Remove from heat and let cool. Add color as desired, mixing well before each application.
This method produces a light green color for plain white cotton fabric or a dark blue-green color for calico. To make other colors, add more teas to the boiling water after adding the first few. For example, to make a pale yellow, add three more tea bags to the boiling water after adding the first six; to make a red, add five more tea bags after adding the first few.
So, how did it go? Were you able to dye your fabric using tea? Did you have any problems?
Here are their suggestions.
Bring 1 cup of salt and 16 cups of water to a boil (or 1/2 cup of salt and 8 cups of water). Before dying, soak your cloth in this solution for one hour. (To produce a plant- or veggie-based color, use 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water and follow the same steps as above.) When it's finished simmering, rinse it under cold water. The salt will remove any excess acid from the vinegar, making it safe for fabrics.
There are two types of dyes: direct and indirect. Direct dyes are those that require no other substances to complete their coloring process. These dyes can be natural or synthetic. Natural dyes include berries, roots, insects, and fish scales. Synthetic dyes are chemicals that mimic the colors found in nature. They can be extracted from plants or manufactured in a lab.
Indirect dyes need another substance to turn them red. These dyes can only be used with wool or cotton. Common ingredients used for this purpose include madder root, alkanet root, walnut leaves, and oak bark. Dyeing with these substances is called "mordanting" your fabric. Mordant salts contain sodium or potassium and are used with indigo and other blue dyes. Yellow dyes are mordanted with white phosphorus and white lead respectively. Black dyes are mordanted with red iron oxide or black iron ore.
Dying clothes requires careful planning. You don't want to put them in the bath together, for example.
Boil the cloth in a combination of one part vinegar and four parts water for one hour. When your cloth is finished, rinse it with cold water. In a dye bath, immerse wet cloth. Simmer until the desired color is achieved. Rinse in cold water and dry.
This is a simple process that you can use to create different colors using what you have around the house. Use caution not to over-dye your cloth though; some dyes are toxic if ingested or absorbed through the skin. Also be sure to test a small piece of cloth before dipping the whole thing in the dye bath!
Home sewing kits come with various tools needed to fix tears, holes, and loose threads. While some things (such as needles) may seem like they would cost more than they do at the store, other items such as fabrics, thread, and buttons are affordable alternatives to brand-name products. These are just some of the many projects that you can create with handmade gifts. Be creative!