Monday, May 07, 2007

Compression Dyeing Cotton Jersey Yardage

Compression-dyed cotton jersey

This weekend's project has been dyeing some cotton jersey cut yardage. I wanted to duplicate the effects I got from "baggie dyeing" woven cotton yardage, so I poked around the Internet and assembled this library of links.

Procedure used on this fabric: I accordion-pleated the wet fabric, coiled it in a wash pan, and poured on my dye solutions (Procion MX dyes, "fuchsia" and "turquoise"). After half an hour, I added the alkaline fixative (soda ash) the same way. After a few hours I turned the fabric over so that both sides of the fabric would stand in the shallow fixative solution. I let it stand about 16 hours at 80 degrees F before washing. It doesn't duplicate the delicate detail of the small batch methods described below, but it'll do.

The following references show how to hand-dye small amounts of fabric to create a "palette" of different fabrics for quilting and other patchwork projects. I find the techniques don't necessarily scale up from quilters' fat quarters to yardage sufficient for a garment, but I really like the looks, especially the color gradient dyeing projects in Adriene Buffington's book and Heidi Lund's study group project.

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