If you've never tried it, dye-painting is totally fun and easy. Just paint any design with your shade du jour and heat set the dye in the microwave. It's best to paint on a light colored fabric or dye up the base color yourself beforehand. Remember the rules of color mixing apply, so in my case painting yellow on the turquoise dress looks green. Nifty color fun!
1. Prewash dress to remove any finishes that may prevent absorption of dyes. Dry and iron if very wrinkled.
2. Cover table with plastic tablecloth.
3. Lay the dry dress on sheets of plastic wrap that have been overlapped so plastic is slightly larger than dress.
4. Insert layers of parchment or craft paper inside dress and sleeve areas. This will prevent dye from bleeding through to other side.
5. Sketch out the placement of flowers and leaves with tailorâ€™s chalk on both sides of dress before dye-painting.
6. OK, time to mix up some dye! Wearing rubber gloves, measure and mix two dye colors: 1 Tablespoon Royal Blue liquid dye with 1 C Hot water. Stir well 1 Tablespoon Golden Yellow liquid dye with 1 C Hot water. Stir well.
Note: If tap water is not hot enough, just heat the water in microwave or in a tea kettle.
7. Starting at top of dress, brush on big flower petal swirls using the Royal Blue dye. Then brush on big leaves using the Golden Yellow dye.
8. Turn dress over, and repeat dye-painting on back side. Note: Reheat dye in the microwave as needed. Line bottom of microwave with paper towels. Cover dye container with plastic wrap and set on High for 30 second intervals until dye is hot.
9. After painting back side, dab up excess dye with paper towels. Cover dress with plastic wrap and seal outer edges.
10. Fold to fit into microwave. Cover bottom of microwave with paper towels. Place plastic-wrapped dress in the microwave. Set on HIGH for 2 minutes. Remove from microwave. Cut open plastic wrap. Allow to cool.
11. Rinse dress in cool water until water runs clear. Wash in warm water with mild detergent, rinse and hang dry. Iron dress.
12. Insert parchment paper inside dress. Outline the flower petals with a blue fabric marker and the leaves with a green fabric marker. This will add more definition to the flower motifs.
Tip: Place dress on a padded board or ironing board when drawing with markers.