I feel like it's been ages since I've done a craft project. I found myself with time on my hands and an entertaining opportunity (Father's Day) to prepare for so I decided to get going on a project that I've been dyeing (pun intended) to try for a while- Ombre, or dip-dyeing some napkins.
First, I needed some napkins. Since I working with a nautical theme I didn't want anything to look too "finished", that is I wanted a sort of raw quality to exist. Then I remembered finding a big stack of unused flour sack towels in my mother's sewing stool. Score. I pre-washed then cut them in half. Now, if you're OCD this method won't work for you because it yielded some rectangle shaped napkins and not your typical 20x20" square variety. It didn't bother me one bit because it saved me a trip to the fabric store. Since I only needed to finish one side of the napkin hem, I went the lazy route and used iron-on hem tape. I've had great luck with this brand.
Next it was time to start dyeing! I used Rit powder dye in teal. I basically followed the tutorial on their website for ombre dying, using the stove top method. My dye bath was a higher concentration since I didn't use as much water to dilute dye color, so I didn't leave my fabric in as long as they suggested.
To achieve this effect I got the napkins wet with warm water, then dip-dyed two at a time. I submerged the bottom half of the napkins for 2 seconds, then pulled it up about 4 inches, letting the dye soak in for about 1 minute. I repeated this once more for 2 minutes.
For each batch of napkins I immediately transferred to a wash bucket and rinsed them in the sink until the water ran clear. After the dyeing was complete the directions said to wash using a mild detergent. I wasn't too keen on putting these in the washing machine so I just washed by hand and tossed them in the dryer.
The result was exactly what I envisioned...like an ocean wave coming into shore. I can't wait to set the table with these! I never thought the day would come where I get this excited about table linens. Haha.
Of course now I'm looking around for other things I can dip-dye...curtains, chair covers, dresses... I haven't felt like this I realized the transforming power of spray paint.