I’ve been really itching to try this since I saw it was possible. I read all the blog posts I could find from a “fabric dye Annie Sloan” web search. Then I was set to go.
From my research it seams that you can just wing it or if you are uncomfortable with that try a 1 part chalk paint to 20 parts water dilution.
I had a massive heavy throw it weighed over 3kg and was bright white. I want to use it to make a cover for seating on our corner couch that my husband and the great Uncle Malcolm built. I’m planning patchwork but didn’t fancy white in a household with 2 smallish girls, a dog and a cat (oh and a mother who attracts muck and and a dad who could walk through a paint blizzard and come out spotless, but won’t take his shoes off).
I thought I would start with the recommended dilution and as I had a large purple trug I used this to hold the dye. I used a plastic pot I had hanging around and poured it full of Emile. Then tipped it in my trug.
Followed by 20 pots of water, I mixed it well with my trusty stick, or so I thought. Then warily added my clean dry fabric. I was wary because I thought I probably had too much fabric for the liquid but reasoned that I could add more liquid later on to dilute the dye. (Wrong and right, I’ll explain as we go on).
The fabric soaked it right up and as I moved it round in the trug I discovered that I hadn’t mixed it as well as I thought.
..and I was right that there was not enough liquid. I added some more water and mixed it gingerly. It behaved so totally differently to dye I had played with in the past. I love it. The fabric which touched the dye first was dyed a lot darker that the fabric which reached the dye as it was diluted. The fabric became the exact same colour as the liquid it was placed in and didn’t appear to wash out at all.
The picture on the right has some wash cloths in that I decided to throw in for fun.
As the fabric had been immersed for different amounts of time in different strength dye it was patchy, not a problem for me as I was going to cut it up anyway, but I couldn’t resist experimenting further.
I couldn’t resist putting my hands in to swish it around a bit as I had read that it doesn’t stain skin at all. It didn’t.
I tried rubbing the bits that were stained darker and trying to even out the dye, it worked…
to a certain extent. I also discovered that with my fabric one side stained slightly differently to the other. As you can see when it was on the line to dry.
Overall it was probably only in the dye tub for about 30 mins but The colour didn’t change visibly from the time it first touched the dye. I hung it straight up to dry dripping wet and there is no colour leak from it now. I haven’t washed it yet but as its so big will have to do it separately anyway and from all the other reports I have read it doesn’t lose dye anyway.
I love how this project has turned out and will definately be dyeing fabric with Annie Sloan chalk paint again. Next time I will make sure it is properly mixed and I have enough liquid for my fabric at the start for an even colour. Also I will be choosing the shade I want by eye rather than measuring as the colour of the liquid was the colour of fabric I got. I will also be experimenting with some colour mixing, as what you see is what you get. How simple, love it.
I was going to save the leftover dye and chuck some more experiments in but a small kitten has appeared in our garden and I didn’t fancy its chances if it fell in the trug.