Color Correction: Dip Dye Curtain Tutorial

A few months back our blog featured the dip dye/ombre trend that we've seen in homes, on strands of hair and clothing this past year. We promised you that we'd try it out for ourselves and so this week we're giving you a quick tutorial. It turns out that dip dye is not only a trend, but a sustainable way to re-purpose the old fabric in your household that have seen better days.

I live in an apartment with my dog Kocoa who loves to push his head through the curtains to look outside of the window. Fabrics and linens, primarily with whites, tend to become dingy over the years no matter how much washing and or bleaching you do (though I am personally not a fan of bleach). So I re-visited the the dip dye trend to color correct the stains that frequently appear. As a very resourceful person with sometimes limited resources, I found the project to be easy as pie and I'm sure you will too.

Supplies Needed:

  • Plastic bin and or any large deep container
  • Spray bottle (or empty hair product bottle from your recycling)
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Liquid or Powder Dye
  • Some sort of dowel rod ( I just used my curtain rod )


Instructions:

  1. Launder fabric to wash out (paw prints) or any stains that won't allow the dye to fully absorb.
  2. Prepare an area outside for your project using unfolded boxes, a throw cloth or something of the sort, so you won't have to worry about dripping.
  3. Fill your bin with hot water about 1/4 of the way up and dip half of the curtain into the water without the dye, then take the curtain out.


4. First making sure that the water is still hot, add your dye (we used Tulip in Royal Blue) to the bin, mixing it thoroughly so that the dye distributes evenly onto your fabric. There should be more detailed instructions regarding the water to dye ratio on the packet — which ultimately depends on how dark you plan to dye your fabric. We used two packets for about 2 gallons of hot water.

 

5. With the fabric securely attached to your rod, slowly dip the wet curtain into the dye. We dipped it about three quarters of the way in, lifting several inches every 10 minutes or so. Keeping the end of the curtain in the dye longer than the rest. Doing so creates an overall ombre look. (Obviously, the longer you leave the curtain in the dye, the more saturated the color becomes. We left our two curtain panels in for about 1 hour)

6. As you go, be sure to use the water bottle to spray any dye splashes so that there aren't any blunt marks of dye on your fabric.

7. Hang curtains to dry outside in the sunshine, then rinse your fabric in cold water until the water runs clear. Hang to dry again and enjoy!

We get a lot of uneven light in my flat during the day, creating a lot of shadows, making it difficult to get the best photo. Even so, the overall appearance and vibe of the home has already changed dramatically because of the ombre pop of color.

If you're not fully committed to experimenting with your curtains, try dipping old woven baskets, wooden cooking spoons, table cloths or napkins. The possibilities are truly endless! And be sure to send us photos of your projects — we'd love to share them on our blog.