Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Mad Scientist at Work!

That's would it would look like at my house...or a crazed cook!! I have been in the kitchen coffee dying fabric and coming up with all kinds of concoctions to add to the recipe. My good friends Karen and Joan gave me their "recipes" and I've been at it. I decided, like any recipe I get, to tweak it. To put my own flavor to it and I have to say, I'm pretty happy with the results.

This all started when I purchased a large piece of linen that should have been a neutral, autumn feeling color and instead, I got something that looked like baby lotion. It was pink! I didn't like it when I opened the mail and I have no idea why I didn't send it back. I cut a chunk out of it for a project and tea-dyed it but it still had a strong pink tone to it. That's when I decided to put on the apron and start cooking up some strong coffee.

I dipped the fabric, baked it and decided I really didn't like the way it turned out. Was a little too streaky with coffee lines and more primitive than I was use to. Back in the coffee cauldron it went and this time, I rolled it in a towel to get most of the water out and then ironed it dry. Perfect! I got a nice mottled look with the coffee and a very uniformed shading of brown. I dipped and ironed dry about 3 times to get the shade that I wanted. Time consuming but not too bad when you set the ironing board up in front of the television - tee hee!

Here's a picture of the linen that has not been dyed yet (on the left in all it's pink glory) and the new improved coffee-dyed, yummy smelling linen (on the right). (Colors are much lighter in person - not a good day for picture taking)
One thing to note about ironing your coffee dyed fabric dry - the backside of the linen will be much lighter than the front. I have no idea why! I am assuming the direct heat from the iron does something to the color on the threads that the backside doesn't get. Just an assumption here! There was no "bleeding" of the coffee onto my ironing board cover so it's a mystery. Just a fun fact to know and tell!

Give it a try! I know you have a piece of linen in your stash that just won't do so brew up a pot of STRONG coffee and get to dippin'! What do you have to lose?!

Until we chat again.......

6 comments:

Michele said...

love the color!!! I'll have to give it a try :)

Mama Joan said...

Great job. Glad you found "your" recipe. Pretty fun isn't it.

Charlene ♥ SC said...

I love the 'chemistry' of dying. You'll have to try tea on another chunk - right now I can't remember which is which, but one seems to give a more pink tone and the other a more yellow... I searched for some 'baby lotion' colored high count linen and couldn't find any, so I went with Rit...but may have to tone it down with some tea... Great job!

Vonna said...

I think it is MUCH better :)
FYI...tan rit, cocoa brown rit and mocha rit....does a nice job too in future if you get some baby lotion linen! (HA HA HA)

Fiona said...

Your dyeing came out great, will have to give this a try sometime.

Karen said...

it turned out great! I might have to try Joan's/your way as well sometime for a not so primitive look! :)