Q:

What are the basic instructions for dyeing fabric?

A:

Quick Answer

To dye most fabrics, fill a sink about halfway with hot tap water, add liquid dye, immerse the fabric, and stir for 15 minutes. Remove the fabric, rinse in warm running water, and then make the water cooler until it runs clear. Wash the fabric with mild detergent on cold, and then dry before using.

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Full Answer

To dye natural fabrics such as cotton, linen, silk or wool, wash the fabric if it is new, and then prep your work area by covering it with a drop cloth. Fill a bucket, bin or sink with hot or boiling water, except when dyeing wool, which requires warm water. Wearing rubber gloves, add liquid dye and either salt or white vinegar to help the fabric take the dye. Add salt when dyeing cotton or linen, and add the vinegar when dyeing wool or silk.

Wet the fabric, and then immerse it in the dye bath. Stir the dye with a stainless steel spoon for 15 minutes. Remove the fabric and rinse it in warm water at first, and then switch to cold water until it runs clear. Wash the bucket, bin, or sink immediately to avoid staining.

Before using the fabric, wash with a mild detergent on the cold cycle, and then dry.

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