Makers Month: Make it: Shibori tie dyed curtains

Dyeing fabric is a bit of a new obsession for me and one which if I’m not careful may consume my entire house! I had dyed fabric in school and university but recently had another go with as it was the focus of one of my We Make Collective boxes. If you want to know all about this and what I did with my kit you can read about it here.
So when Sammy and H got in touch to see if I’d like to share a DIY on the blog I thought my dyed curtains would be perfect to share as it’s super easy!

What you’ll need: White cotton curtains - or any cotton fabric, Dye - I used indigo dye from the kit but normal fabric dye will work too, Rubber bands/string, Rubber gloves.
Step 1 - Dampen your fabric to encourage the fabric to absorb the dye more readily

Step 2 - Mix up your dye as instructed on the packet. I used indigo dye which can be a little trickier to get ready but once you’ve mixed all the ingredients it should have a film on top like this...

Step 3 - Tie up your fabric with your rubber bands or string. You can follow traditional patterns such as pleating or marbling or just make it up as you go along! The basic rule is that wherever you tie on a rubber band it should prevent the dye from reaching the fabric and create a pattern. I chose to pleat my curtains so began by folding them both with the same sized pleat by laying them next to each other as I folded.
This was by no means an exact science but again all adds to the charm of the overall effect. Once I had pleated both curtains I attached my rubber bands along the fabric. Mine are blue as I had used them previously.

I wanted to try and get them fairly evenly spaced on both curtains to create a similar effect when dyed.
The most important thing is to make sure that you tie the rubber bands or string on tightly as if you leave any room for the dye to get in you wont see any pattern when you take them off.
Step 4 - Dye your fabric! You want to immerse the fabric in your dye carefully to avoid spillages and wearing gloves can help to prevent funny coloured fingers! It will probably float on the top so make sure you keep turning it every now and then to achieve an even dye. Again follow your dye instructions for this. If using indigo dye you only need to leave your fabric in the dye for a few minutes and then take it out where it will slowly turn from green to blue as it oxidises.
Step 5 - Hang to dry & then display!

I have also used this technique as part of my year long creative project #daphnerosainbloom where I am using a different flower in bloom each month to inspire me to create something and blogging about it here. April's tulips definitely benefited from my new obsession!

I hope you enjoyed the DIY and have lots of fun exploring the world of dyeing! I’d love to see any of your efforts so do be sure to tag me on Instagram if you share. You can find me at @daphnerosaflowers.

Kate, x

Thanks so much to Kate for this fabulous tutorial, don't forget to #livelovemake on Instagram or twitter if you give this a go and tag @daphneroasaflowers too of course!

Now, what can we use for all the Shibori dying we are going to be doing! ha ha
H & Sammy, xxx

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