Friday, January 20, 2012

Christmas and Big Kid Birthday's Part II

For Eve's 6th birthday I decided to dye her some playsilks.  She had used some before at a friends house, and I'd been hemming and hawing over the idea of buying fabric just for her (I mean I have enough around the house anyway), but I'm SOOoo glad I did.  She absolutely loves them.  I do too.

I bought the silks from the Dharma Trading company.  For $21.80 shipped I got four 21.5" x 21.5", one 30" x 30" and one 35" x 35".  I also spent less than $2 in koolaid and vinegar.  Like dying wool for longies, dying the playsilks was just as easy.  I didn't really follow anyone's directions in particular, but just did gain some knowledge from a few sites I googled quickly.

The process is pretty easy.  Presoak the silks in a mixture of vinegar and water for about 5 minutes (heavy on the vinegar). 

Mix the koolaid in a mixture of water and vinegar (heavy on the water).  The amount of water/dye used depends on what intensity you want and the amount of variation.  Less water = more of a crumpled look, More water = Smooth. You can just toss the crumpled up silk in the water or you can try other 'fancy' methods, like shapes or stripes.  Above I tied the silk into a heart shape. 

In the image above, I made stripes.  I was going to use green in the middle afterwards, but realized I had run out of lemon-lime.  I held of the package below to my husband said, "Do you think this watermelon one is green?  Or maybe red?" and he gave me the you're-stupid-in-a-funny-way-look, and I read the package.  Invisible. Big letters. Right.  I do this a lot.

Anyway, after you decide what you want, microwave on high a minute (or two) on, a minute off.  Watch it carefully and monitor the dryness/temperature of the silk (no fires please!!).  After you finish setting the dye, rinse in cold water until the water runs clear.  Use gloves/plastic bags or your hands will look like mine did :)   I had a really hard time getting the orange to set and eventually gave up.  It hasn't bled all over, thankfully, but I never did get the water to run clear.   I wish I had more pink to dye the large silk, but when it's folded up/in use it's looks a little more vibrant.

Anyway, the silks came out gorgeous, and I'm so glad we got them.  It was a neat project, and it was nice that I was able to get it all done in one night while Eve was sleeping. Below you can see one of the playsilks in action on a awesome doll Eve's friend and her Mom made Eve for her birthday.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the instructions. I'll give it a try!