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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Dye & Print

The goal of the stamp workshop I attended a couple of months ago was ofcourse to print my own fabric. It took me a while to get there though. First I ordered fabric from the Dharma Trading, who sell all kinds of natural fabrics especially suited for dyeing. Miriam of Mad Mim had used a silk rayon blend for her printed scout tee, but I thought that was a bit on the sheer side so I went with a bamboo rayon blend. I also ordered their fiber reactive dyes in coral and safari grey. Their dyes have this "contains chemicals that cause cancer" warning. Ehm, what? So why would I want to dye something with this stuff I wear on my bare skin? And wash this down the water system where it gets recycled and winds up in my tap again? I did it anyway because maybe I don't care enough (apparently). That bamboo-rayon blend though... what a wonderful fabric. The drape is so so nice, and I love that it's a natural fabric. I'm thinking of getting a couple more yards, I could live in this stuff.




As you can see I used coral pink. I had intended for it to come out a bit darker, and it hasn't dyed evenly either. I do like this effect so I don't mind. Then I tried out some stamps and colours and settled on the triple V stamp. I also tried birds and raindrops but since the shirt was already so pink I wanted to counterbalance it with a bold stamp. And I think it worked out! I cut out the pieces and then stamped them so I could control the placement. I started at the front, in the middle and was going to print it all over. But after three rows I took a step back and I really liked it this way. A little tip: don't ever try to correct a stamp. It just gets messy.




I drafted this pattern myself, I wanted to start working with wovens and needed a couple of easy shirts for this summer. The sleeves need some revisioning, but other than that I'm pretty satisfied with this shirt. I used my rolled hem foot for the hem (first time) and Grainline's neckline tutorial. Jen's blog is my go-to place for tutorials, they're just so clever.



This is the first time I'm wearing something pink. Ever! I always thought it was too girly, but the truth is, it suits me a whole lot better than red-orange tones. I might start wearing it more often, I've got a lot more of that cancer-causing dye, hehe. I'd like to experiment with using more colours and tie-dyeing. Sallie-oh does wonderful things with dyes. I'd steal her wardrobe if I could! So I'm curious, do you have that same feeling about Dharma? Have you printed clothing (show us!)?

19 comments:

  1. I think this is one of the things I love the most so far. I love the home made print. I looks really chique, but in a good way. The colour looks amazing on you. Also big fan of the sleeves. Actually trying to find something I don't like. But no I love it. (would definitly buy this in a store)

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    1. Haha, you comments always make me laugh :) Thanks for the compliments!

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  2. Gorgeous!

    ANd I wouldn't worry too much about the cancer warnings. Dharma trading is located in San Francisco, and in California they are super strict about warnings like that! Everything that has even remotely been linked to cancer has to have a warning. When I was in San Francisco almost every store, coffee house or restaurant had some sign up saying that 'this location sells products with ingredients that have been linked to certain cancers'. It's the same stuff as anywhere else, they just have to say it!

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    1. Hey Anneke, thanks for the clarification! It does sound a lot better when you know the background story.

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  3. Oh wow, this is great! I really like what you did with the simple bold print, and how it is only on part of the shirt - very cool. I am wondering what pattern you used for the top? It's great!

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    1. I drafted the pattern myself! It might become available later... ;)

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  4. I have used Dharma Trading many times in the past - usually silk for dance scarves or dance skirts. I love their customer service! They are helpful and knowledgeable. They process my order quickly and it always comes exactly the way I ordered it.
    I've ordered dyes from them as well. Yes, they come with all kinds of precautions and warnings. They have to warn you of all the terrible consequences of using the items incorrectly.
    The only way to get safe dyes is to use food based dyes. I've tried this and although I got some really interesting colours, I couldn't get consistency. So I stick to the chemical dyes.

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    1. Hey, just to say I didn't mean that they're not good in terms of how they run the company. I was just wondering about the origins of the fabric. It's important to me to know in what circumstances these are produced, especially when they come from countries such as China.

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    2. Bamboo rayon takes a lot of resources to produce. Chemicals are used to break down the bamboo fibres and a lot of water is used in the production process. However, bamboo itself is an easily grown, renewable resource. It doesn't need the same amount of water or pesticides as cotton. It is easier to grown and produces a beautiful cloth.
      Good luck with your investigation - you'll have to let us know what you find out.

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  5. this looks amaze-balls! I want it! I'm going to have to check out this home-printing thing. Looks so unique!

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    1. And it's so much fun to do, too! Especially the stamping.

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  6. This is extremely excellent! The colors, the cut, and the print play off each other and are still harmonious. Everything about this top is a success.

    I love bamboo rayon too!

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  7. I like this a lot. The placement of the chevrons AND the pinky-coral-y colour your fabric turned out. Nice!

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  8. Love it!!!!! The pattern, the colour and the details! Well done!

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  9. wow, if i saw this on the street i'd swear it was an urban outfitters/anthro/madewell shirt... i LOVE it!!

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  10. Your shirt is lovely.

    There's great information on Paula Burch's website about dyeing with fiber reactive dyes, and on the safety of those dyes.
    http://www.pburch.net/dyeing/FAQ/eating.shtml

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    1. That's really helpful, thanks so much!

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  11. I love the shirt! Especially the sleeves and the print.
    I have the same sort of fear when it comes to pink, but truth is, some things actually do look nice in pink.

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  12. I like everything about this shirt! The colour, the stamp and the pattern!
    Really great!

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