If you’re anything like most people, you probably have a favorite shirt, blouse, dress, coat, or any piece of clothing you just cannot bear to part with.
Never mind that it’s seen too many washes you can’t tell what the dye for clothes original color is anymore or that what used to be white now looks more like cream and not in a flattering shade at that. Whatever your reason is for holding on to that precious piece of clothing, I bet you would like to know how to make it wearable again.
And there is one thing you can do to breathe new life into your clothes. Dye them!
It’s easy, fun, and do it long enough, it’s almost a Zen like experience.
Here are some pointers for first timers then. Just like any arts and crafts project, these were culled from my experience and I’m sharing them with you now because I’ve had very satisfactory results and I just love how suddenly, I seem to have my old favorites back!
Speaking of not being a professional, make sure to follow the instructions. Whatever dye you use, there’s bound to be instructions written on the packet or packaging somewhere. Make sure to follow it. If it says dilute the dye in boiling water, don’t think tepid would do. If it says add salt to the mixture, add just the right amount as instructed. There’s a science behind it that I honestly cannot explain at this point, unless I start researching more on how the actual dyeing process works – which isn’t the point of this article – and you don’t have to argue with science when you’re having fun.
Trust that the washing machine will do a pretty good job. I don’t have cauldron big enough to hold my jackets in when I dyed them. So, I used the washing machine. Don’t worry, dyes don’t stain plastic or metal. Ideally, you’d like to hot dye your clothes to give them more vibrant colors – and that means boiling them while you dye them. But cold dyeing is just fine too, except the colors don’t come out as deep. Don’t be fooled by the term though. When you “cold dye” your clothes, you still have to boil enough water to be able to submerge you clothes in it, boil the dye, and add it to the mixture.
A good rule of thumb is to set your washing machine to a “wash cycle” setting for at least 20 minutes. You can reset again and again, as many times as you like to get a deeper color. Remember though that colors look much deeper when wet so if you’re set on a really dark color, I suggest a longer wash cycle, and more dye.