How much fabric can you dye with a Ziploc bag of Slipstream dye?
- This is like asking “How long is a piece of string?” and will depend on the following factors: How much fabric do you wish to dye? How thick is it? What is it made of? What shade of colour do you want to achieve? What technique do you plan to use? Do you plan to recycle the dye?
- Mix the powders with 2 litres of water for the strongest colour.
- For soft, pastel colours mix the dye with 100 litres of water.
- When using submerged techniques, it will dye whatever fabric the fluid can cover. Different fabrics are different weights, thicknesses and widths. You can dye 20 metres of chiffon silk in the same amount of fluid as you would use for 1 metre of towelling.
- When using techniques where you dip the fabric, the dye will go further.
- For more information on different techniques we suggest you purchase a copy of Contemporary Dyecraft / Eietydse Kleurkuns or the Dyecraft DVD.
What fabric can you dye with Slipstream dye?
- Slipstream dye works best on natural plant fibres. These include cotton, linen, hemp and bamboo.
- Examples include T-shirting, towelling, denim, corduroy, cotton velvet, chamber, muslin, poplin, seed cloth, calico, twill, ramie and drill.
- Many of these fabrics are also manufactured in a poly/cotton blend, so make sure that you establish that it is 100% natural fibre before you start. Poly/cotton blends will give varying results and pastel shades.
- Fabrics made from wood pulp, like viscose, will also take dye well. Rayon is also a good option.
- You can dye animal fibres like silk, leather and wool with varying results. We recommend shorter exposure times to avoid damaging the fibre. We explore silk techniques in Contemporary Dyecraft.
- Man-made fibres like polyester will not take up the dye.
Is the dye colour-fast?
- If used correctly, the colours are robust and fast over many washes. They are bright, vibrant and lasting and can withstand regular laundering conditions.
- They are susceptible to chlorine and peroxide bleach, as well as heavy UV exposure.
Is it a Hot or a Cold dye?
Slipstream dye works best at 65-70 degrees Celsius. If you are aiming for an exact colour, then you need to work in that range. You will get varying results from colder fluids.
How consistent is the colour from one batch to the next?
We cannot guarantee consistency of end product colour because there are so many variables that affect the outcome. These include…
- choice of base cloth including fibre, colour and surface treatments
- your process and whether it efficiently met the heating requirements of the chemistry
- water quality
- Variable dye supply (Our suppliers shop around.)
- Variations in the climatic conditions during the growth of one crop to the next.
- The colour that we suggest on the box is merely a guideline of what you can expect if you use the dye in optimum conditions on a white 100% cotton base cloth.
We recommend that you test a small swatch of the actual fabric that you are going to use to check both colour and methodology before you start.
Where colour consistency is important, please use meticulous methodology for best results. Also purchase enough Slipstream dye for the whole project so that you have dye from the same batch for the whole job.
What is “Best Practice” for waste disposal?
- Why throw it away when you can re-use it? The colour will be softer and have less texture the second and third time around.
- Throw the waste down the drain. The municipal sewerage system is equipped to handle the small quantity that you produce.
- Do not throw concentrated dye in the garden or down a septic tank.
- The rinsing water from washing out the fabric can be let out on your garden, as long as the dye waste is very diluted. Use less soap to rinse with if you plan to let this water out onto your garden.
- Dye waste may stain a porcelain sink, stainless steel is better.
- Do not use a pot that you have used for dye for cooking food.
- The salt and fixative are corrosive and will rust certain metals.
- You can scrub the stains from your hands or use bleach. Stains will fade over a couple of days.
How do you recycle your Slipstream dye?
- Why throw dye away when you can re-use it?
- For best results, reheat the dye on the cloth.
- If you cannot reheat the dye, you can leave the fabric in for longer. I have left fabric in dye for up to 3 weeks for gorgeous colour-fast results.
- The colour will be softer and have less texture the second and third time around.
- The chemistry will be less efficient on the second and third use and the colour may change. Expect a surprise when it comes out of the dyebath.
- If you need a very specific colour, it is best to use freshly mixed dye.
- Recycled dye is very useful for quilters who want graded shades in a similar colour way.
- Recycled dye is also useful for creating background colours for fabric painting.
Who will use Slipstream dye?
- Crafters, quilters, weavers, fibre artists, fashion designers, clothing manufacturers, screen printers, interior designers, décor manufacturers, teachers, lecturers, skills trainers, costume makers, set and prop builders and photographers.
- Kids love making tie dye, although we must stress that this is a mother-and-child activity and that children should never be left alone with the chemicals.
- People who want to recycle their faded denims and stained T-shirts.
What are the benefits of working with Slipstream dye?
- People who work with fabric can now enjoy on-demand colour and texture.
- Crafters have a new way to express their colourful impulses.
- Everybody has fun when they experience their first Wow Moment!
- Make you own garments. Refresh your old clothes with a new coat of colour or make new ones.
- Make your own décor items. Is there a signature finish and colour that you would like to see decorating your home? Make duvet covers, pillow cases, curtains, tablecloths, cushion covers, napkins and placemats to match.
- Make gifts for friends and family. T-shirts are always popular with the boys and silk scarves are well received by girls.
- Recycle your faded denims. Bring new life to old things that you were ready to throw away.