DIY Cardigan Transformation

This week, I decided to take on a fun dye project that I had seen floating around Pinterest.

I have an old white cardigan in my closet that I never wear anymore because it's very dingy and has a few small stains. So, I decided that I would jazz it up a bit by creating a design on it and dyeing it another color.

Here's what you'll need:

  • Blue Elmer's glue gel 
  • ONE GALLON of hot water. (per packet of dye.)
  • White tee/cardigan/tank top (or anything else, really, as long as it's made of cotton/linen, etc. no polyester or fabrics like that, because they won't turn out.)
  • Fabric dye (Rit is a popular brand, but I picked up a Tulip brand dye to try it out.)
  • Tub that will hold at least a gallon of water (I used a big stainless steel pot) 

Start by laying out your shirt on a flat surface and draw your design out with the glue. I would do this before bedtime the night before you're going to dye it, because you will need to let the glue dry, which will take several hours.

I've seen other tutorials where they want you to wet the fabric first before applying the glue, but I didn't have any problems with doing it dry, so I suppose you can do it either way. If you get the fabric wet first, though, it will take much longer because you'll have to wait for the entire garment to dry before dyeing it.

Here's what my cardigan looked like beforehand (with the blue gel glue in the pocket)

what your glue should look like

backside of cardigan
bottom front of the cardigan i love the little hearts on the pockets. :)

I just started making squigglies, zig-zags, and straight lines in no particular order. Once you're done drawing your design, let the glue dry completely. Again, this will take several hours.

Once the glue is dry, grab your tub and fill it with ONE GALLON of HOT water. The hotter the water is, the darker the dye will be. 

When your hot water is ready, grab 1/4 cup of salt, and your dye packet. 

Dump the salt into the hot water, and stir it in.

Then, add the packet of dye to the water. Sort of looks like a witch's brew. Mwahaha.

Stir in the dye and salt until everything is completely dissolved, then add your garment. 

(sorry about the picture quality for these next pictures ahead of time, we have a yellow bathtub, bad lighting, and a crappy camera to work with, so this is the best i could get, hehe.)

What you want to do next, after your garment is in, is stir consistently for 15 minutes straight. (Shane and I took turns stirring.) When that 15 minutes is up, you will leave the garment in the dye for another 45 minutes, stirring occassionally. I stirred it once every 5 mins or so. 

such a big help. :)

When your time is up, dispose of the dye water and rinse out your fabric in cold water.

Once you've rinsed it out, wash in warm water. Do not wash with any other garments for the first few washes, because there may be residual dye in the garment that will stain the other clothes.

Dry the garment like normal, and voila!

The dye on mine did come out much lighter than I thought it would, but I'm still satisfied with the finished product. 

What I'm going to do next is buy some plain white tees/tanks/tights/socks and start going dye crazy! Have fun! 

Make sure to come back for a brand new playlist tomorrow on Music Monday! 


1 comment:

  1. Where did you drain the water with the dye when you were done ?