I’ve been dying to try shibori dyeing fabric for quite some time now. Particularly to make some pillows. So, when I came across this fabric at my favorite thrift store for only $10.75 I scooped it up faster than you can say shibori. The two rolls on the left are from Joann Fabric store and I’m pretty sure it’s drapery lining. Which means it’s 100% cotton, excellent for dyeing, but also coated with a stain resistant finish, not great for dyeing. I figured what the heck, at this price it’s not a huge loss if it doesn’t work. There’s about 20 yards of fabric total so no matter how I end up using the fabric it was a great purchase.
So I cut the fabric into manageable size pieces, 22″ strips from selvage to selvage. I cut 22″ inch strips because I plan to make 20″ square pillows and that’s the size of the IKEA feather pillow forms(best priced feather pillow form out there, it may be 80/20 feather/down instead of 90/10 feather/down, but I’m not that picky).
I used regular RIT dye in Navy. Nothing special, straight outta the grocery store. I boiled about two and a half gallons of water. I used slightly less water than recommended on the RIT bottle because I wanted to make sure the color was dark and saturated.
I set up a little work station in my workroom with a couple layers of painters paper underneath. My first attempt was an ombre effect. I dipped the fabric into the hot water and it actually resisted the water. Like beaded up on the surface. Wah, Wah! So with my gloved hands I had to manipulate the fabric by squeezing and swishing it in the dye solution.It still didn’t turn out solid, even after squeezing and swooshing, the fabric came out mottled. It’s the fabric second from the left in the pic above. I really like it though, and I’ll probably use it as my pillow backs. I accordian folded all my fabric pieces and then used different types of items to resist the dye. Binder clips.Clothespins.Rubberbands.
This was a super simple and super fun project. It was rather fast, I cut and folded the fabric quickly and let the pieces sit in the dye for about 10-15 minutes. I transfered the fabric to the empty bucket to drain for a few minutes and brought the bucket outside to open the fabric and hang. The whole process was only about an hour, and I dyed about 8 yards of fabric.
The cost was pretty minimal since I practically stole the fabric. The only purchases other than the fabric was the dye and the gloves, everything else I had(or could be purchased at the dollar tree).
I plan to make pillows with fabric tomorrow. I’ll do a video tutorial on that because I plan to use an invisible zipper for closure, so if your interested in how to put in an invisible zipper in a pillow, check back tomorrow.