Friday, 9 June 2017

How To: Dye Polyester Clothes

An Easy Way to Put Some New Life into Your Old Clothes. 

Have you ever bought something that you absolutely love at the time, in the 'It' colour of the season, only for it to sit in your wardrobe for months and months after because you realised it only goes with that one outfit you wore that one time?  Well this happens to me a lot (mainly cause I've no will power when it comes to shopping!)  And I always feel so guilty that I've bought this really nice piece, never to wear it again.  

Exhibit A, I bought this bright green jacket in New Look last summer, and wore it a total of one time cause it just doesn't go with the majority of my clothes, and quite frankly its too bright to be part of my everyday wear.  I love the style of the jacket and it fits really well so I decided, instead of giving it away or throwing it out, I'd try a little experiment and dye it a new colour! 

The Jacket - Pre-dyeing
That's when I ran into a little bit of bother, and I realised it's Polyester, and synthetic fabrics are much harder to dye than natural ones.  So I did my best google searching looking for how to dye polyester, and I found these iDye Polyester fabric dyes on Amazon, that don't break the bank.  But while I was searching, I didn't find a lot about the dying process of polyester garments, and how easy or difficult is it to dye this type of fabric.  So here I am, your friendly neighbourhood blogger, coming to save the day with all your dyeing needs! 

I originally wanted to dye it a darker shade of green kind of olive, and if that didn't work then a navy or black shade.  There is a number of different shades of this dye, but not in a colour I wanted or particularly liked.  So I took a chance and bought a dark silver grey, and a gunmetal grey colour, in the hopes that these dyes would mix with the dye already in the jacket and make a colour close to what I wanted.  

These are the shades of dye I bought
What you'll need:
- A large stainless steel pot (I used an old one that was lying around my old play shed) But you can use your regular pot, just be sure to bleach and clean it thoroughly straight afterwards and it shouldn't (don't kill me if it does) stain the pot.  Also make sure the pot is large enough to fully submerge the piece of clothing in water. 
- Your dye packets.  Make sure you've enough dye to fully dye your garment.  The dye I used stated that one packet would dye 1kg (2-3lbs) of fabric.  My jacket weighed about 400g but I used the full packet because of the colour I was trying to achive. 
-Rubber gloves.
-A wooden spoon, or something to stir the garment in the dye mixture.
-A hotplate or oven top with adjustable heat.  

Now, finally onto the How To: Dye Polyester Clothing.

Step 1:
Completely soak the garment in warm water. 

Step 2:
Mix your dye packet in the pot that your using. (If you're not using the full packet, you may have to mix in a jug and then add to the pot.  Make sure the dye is fully desolved in the water, and follow the instructions on the dye you have.  For this dye I used enough warm water to cover the garment in.  

Step 3:
Add the dampened garment into the pot and bring to the boil.  Once boiling keep the water at a rolling boil, without it boiling over out of the pot. 

Step 4:
Keep the garment stirred and submerged in the water as best as possible to get an even colour all over.  I left my jacket in the water for about an hour. 
(TIP: Keep an eye on it and keep it stirred, I didn't keep it stirred as well as I could have, and some parts ended up darker than others.

Step 5:
Once you've finished with stirring and dying the garment, rinse out the heavy excess colour in the sink with cool water and a mild detergent (I use washing up liquid) so to not affect the colour of the dye.  Be sure to check your dye packet and see if its suitable to pour the water down the drain.  

Step 6: 
Once the water runs clear from rinsing the garment, I put it in the washing machine to spin out the excess water.  Then hang it up to air dry.  

And there you have it, in 6 easy steps, you've a whole new look! 
I definitely learned from this process and I'll try it again to hopefully better results! I don't think the jacket came out bad, especially not for a first attempt.  But there are a few patches that are darker than the rest of the jacket.  It's not too noticeable, so I'll probably still wear it anyway! If not, I'll just try to dye it black! 

The Finished Look:

*Dark patches can be seen at armpit and pocket of left side.

And YES I do only have one pose! Also thanks to my Dad for acting as my photographer! 

Til the next time, 

MK xo

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