This past weekend I needed background fabric for a project I am working on. I had a yard of muslin that I previously dyed with mottled pinks, purples and greens. It was a bit too pastel and muted for what I wanted, but I realized I had a bottle of orange RIT dye (available in grocery stores). So, I decided to dye the fabric.
I needed 1.5 gallons of water for the vat, which is more than I needed for the yardage. I decided instead of wasting the dye, I would add some vintage lace and trims to the vat. I know that some may consider it sacrilegious to alter vintage fabrics. I pondered it for awhile and decided that it would be OK. I know I would never do anything with the off-white lace and trim. However, if it was something colorful I would find some way to use it.
The photo illustrates the before and after results. I was most excited about the trim with the little flowers. I didn’t know what fibers this was made with. The flowers are individually stitched to tulle and tulle is usually synthetic. And, synthetics don’t usually hold dyes very well. I was taking a gamble and was surprised to find the tulle and flowers held the dye. This experiment worked positively. I’m now confident to do more with this material, because I know it will hold color. Also, the little flowers remind me of pansies or dogwood flowers (which, in my area of the work, are about to burst into spring).
This was fun. Do you take time for creative play time and experimentation? Creative play often involves doing something that you’re not 100% sure what is going to happen. This could have been a big flop of an idea, but it turned into an inspiration.