While offline, I tried some experimental dyeing. One of the things I tried was
dyeing fabric using grape juice.
I began with lace, which was thin.
It was easy to section the lace in a modified shibori diagonal accordion fold. I used plastic clips to hold the folds in place. I hoped these clips would also create distinctive marks in the lace.
Next I tried another accordion fold
and tied the white fabric in rubber bands. I should mention this is dry fabric torn from an old bed sheet.
My final piece was torn from a pink bed sheet and fan folded. I tried to place clips on the three corners, but the fabric was too thick and the clips simply wouldn't hold. I thought about trying to find other clips or even clothes pins, but decided not to bother.
I placed the various dry fabrics in a bucket
and added three small bottles (10 fl oz, 296mL per bottle) of grape juice and heated everything in the microwave for six minutes, in two minute intervals. I allowed the juice and fabric to cool overnight, then removed the fabric and disposed of the grape juice in my compost container.
I allowed the fabric to dry in my basement for three days, but everything was still wet when I thought it was time to undo the clips and rubber bands.
That's when I decided to take the fabric outside to see if it would dry there. What's that on the turquoise clip?
I believe it was a bug. Note the accordion folded fabric wrapped in rubber bands is in the background soaking up the sun.
This is the fan folded once pink fabric. It doesn't look much different than it did before the grape juice dye bath.
Once everything was dry, I removed the clips and rubber bands and prepared to see if this was successful or a failure. I tried to show where the clips had been on the lace, although I'm not sure they did much for the design. I believe these clips would have worked better with solid color fabric, instead of lace.
Next I unwrapped the accordion folds
and was rather disappointed. Where the grape juice had penetrated, all was well. But most of the fabric had been untouched by the grape juice. I can't believe I was able to tie the rubber bands that tightly.
Also, the fan folded pink fabric was nothing to write home about. If you are looking for a subtle mottled pink (and I do love mottled), grape juice is something you should try. But if you are looking for a bold, in-your-face grape, you'll need a different dye, certainly not grape juice.
The grape juice worked relatively well, albeit subtly, on the lace, which was not cotton, but didn't work well on the cotton bed sheets. Thanks for dropping by today because I always appreciate your interest in what I'm cooking up.
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