The monstrosity of restraint I've developed as an Interior Designer is MUCH more powerful than my husband believes it to be. I'm constantly surrounded by beautiful home decor and purchasing for clients isn't as exhilarating as it seems, when you're not taking it home for yourself. My coping mechanism? DIY projects that resemble things you see and want that are insanely expensive. This intro rant brings you to my first DIY here on lè blog, Indigo Dyed Napkins, Shibori style.
Shibori is a Japanese textile art & technique dated back to the 8th century. It's beautiful, unique and authentic. Just give Pinterest a few more months and we'll all be Shibori'd to death, but that won't stop me from making napkins, dishtowels and fabric out of it, will it!
I had a few old West Elm cotton napkins that I wasn't using anymore and decided to give them new life. Once my Indigo Tie Dye kit arrived, I found that it yields 5 pounds of dyed fabric that I couldn't stand to waste. So, I went ahead, re-charged my spendorphins and bought two yards of white cotton fabric, some white feathers AND a stack of white dish towels so I use them as housewarming gifts. Not the feathers, more on that later. This shopping technique is also referred to as hoarding.
If you have a backyard where you can hang a clothesline, I highly recommend doing this depending on the amount of fabric you plan on dying. I hung a twenty foot clothesline across my backyard to account for my hoards before I got started. Also, you'll need a huge bucket with a lid, to keep oxygen from freely flowing around and into your dye. Time to start mixing - make sure you follow the instructions that come along in the box. Once you're done doing a little mixy dance, put a lid on it and step away for about 30 minutes. When you come back, it will look like this.
While that was busy "cooking", I was busy wrapping all my fabrics and getting them ready to be dipped. I used Pinterest as a resource for various Shibori techniques. I spent a good 35 minutes twisting and prepping my fabrics. When you're done with your twisting party, dunk them in the sink for a few minutes and make sure they're soaked before the dying process starts. It should all look something like this.
And should look like this after dunking...
Now, you can choose to let them air dry like this for a while OR if you lack patience like me, you can unwrap them after ten minutes and hang them dry to oxidize quicker. If you choose the path of less patience, it will look like this.
These make such great gifts. I've already wrapped two up for a sweet housewarming gift!