I just dyed some chenille fabric cut from a vintage chenille bedspread to make a custom order diaper bag and thought I would share the process with you. Chenille is so beautiful, and this soft cream color takes dye pretty well. For best success, you need to start with a fairly absorbent fabric, and the more neutral the color the better.
Since I didn’t want my whole bedspread to be turquoise as I will have some left for other projects, I cut my pieces out first,
Dylons Bahama Blue is the best turquoise sort of color I have found. Ritz has a teal which is a little more green and a duller color.
I used a dishpan to do my dying as it was big enough for all of my pieces to be submerged, and was something I didn’t care if stayed a little dyed. If you have a stainless steel sink that can work well too. It is helpful to have a second container ready for your project, so I used a stainless steel bowl. The bottom line is, be careful what you put your dye in, or it will end up dyed too!
As directed on the package, I dissolved the dye in 4 cups of warm water. I varied a bit from the instructions in that I mixed the 8 tablespoons of salt right in with the dye since my fabric was already sitting in the warm water in the dishpan.
Now it is time to get the rubber gloves on, unless of course you want to dye your hands as well! (I have done this before… it takes quite some time to wear off!)
Pour the dye into your container and stir the fabric around in it, making sure every part of it gets exposed to the dye. I do this frequently for the first 15 minutes, then just every time I pass by for the remainder of the time. Instructions said to leave in for another 45 minutes, but since I wanted a little softer look, I only left mine in for 30. If you want a really deep hue, you can leave it in for longer.
Once I had achieved the color I wanted (it needs to be a little darker than you want the end result to be), I wrung out the dye water and put it in my second bowl. I rinsed it a few times in cold water, then popped it into the washing machine on the delicate cycle to avoid raveling of my cut pieces.
After drying, I was happy with the beautiful soft blue. I think it will be perfect for the diaper bag!
Next I threw in a canvas belt and another chunk of chenille to make a matching strap. I love using dye because you can make everything match!
I always try to make the most of a batch of dye… so I threw in a few other things as well, but I will leave that for another day!