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Thread: Ice Dyed Fabric

  1. #1
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    Ice Dyed Fabric

    We were discussing snow dyed fabric on another thread and some folks were sad because they didn't have snow. Well, that's no problem. I use ice from my refrigerator all the time with great results. Here's a quick tutorial.

    I use professional fiber-reactive dyes. some asked about using Rit from the grocery store and I do not know whether it will work with this process. You can try it and report back, but professional dyes are inexpensive and surprisingly easy to use. I get mine from Dharma Trading and Pro Chemicals and they are fantastic to work with. Be sure to get the fiber reactive because these vendors have many many different dyes that are for a number of uses.

    Materials needed:
    Fiber reactive dyes
    A rack or grate (I use a vinyl covered wire shelf extender that you can get in any big box store...you get 3 different sizes for about $5)
    Soda ash (a little goes a long way and you can get it from either of these vendors)
    Cotton material that has been washed. I use Kona Cotton bolt ends that Hancocks of Paducah sells at a discount.

    Dissolve about 2 tablespoons of soda ash in a container of warm water (2 quarts) and soak your fabric for about 5 minutes. You can save this afterwards or soak more fabric and let it dry. It doesn't go bad and the fabric that you soaked and dried t use later just needs to be dampened when you're ready to use it. Roll your fabric in a towel to get most of the drippiness wicked away. Scrunch it up on your rack. I did this over my sink, but you can put it in a pan to catch the drips too.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    Pour ice from your refrigerator over the fabric. You don't have to pile it up.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    Choose your colors and sprinkle the dry dye over the ice and fabric. I never use more than 3 colors and sometimes just 2. I used dark purple, turquoise and berry on this fabric.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    Walk away and let the ice melt. This will take several hours. I usually ice dye in the evening and let it sit all night. The dye bonds with the fabric and continues to work as long as the fabric is damp. You can even lay a piece of plastic wrap over it if your house is very warm, but I never do...leave it at least 6 hours.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    Here;s what it looks like once the ice is melted...pretty messy and not very pretty...right?
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  6. #6
    Senior Member melodyr's Avatar
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    But....rinse it and the magic happens! (I run my fabric through a full wash cycle on hot wash 3 times) Add a few drops of blue Dawn dishwash to the second wash...it works just like Synthrapol and costs alot less.

    And there you have it...ice dyed fabric. You can use snow too, but it makes a more muted design.
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  7. #7
    Power Poster Mariposa's Avatar
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    Wow Melody, thanks for the tute! Looks like a really fun way to make beautiful one-of-a-kind fabric. OK, now off to find the supplies.....
    Be a blessing to others, as you may entertain angels unaware!

  8. #8
    Super Member crafty pat's Avatar
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    Thank you so much. I just have to do that, can't wait to get to the store for some dye.

  9. #9
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    thanks for the tut
    Nancy in western NY
    before you speak THINK
    T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?



  10. #10
    Senior Member Kassaundra's Avatar
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    That is awesome going to have to try this!
    "Never cruel, nor cowardly, never give up, never give in."

    Let's take care of the Earth, it is the only planet that for sure has Chocolate.

    Sonic screwdrivers, fez, bow ties, and Stetsons are cool.

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