adventures with tumeric.

Sunday 10 July 2011

Image via Studded Youth.
Ever since I came across Jaquelyn from lark + linen's blog post about diy home fabric dying, I've been hankering to turn my kitchen into a laboratory of coloured pots, bubbling with textiles. Given that I already love sewing, the idea of dying my own textiles is really exciting. It takes the notion of creating bespoke clothing to a whole new level.
First trial, was fabric dying with tumeric. It was so much fun! Here are some images of the process:
Step 1. I filled a big pot with hot water and 1/2 cup salt and dropped the fabric in. I brought it to the boil and simmered for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. You're meant to use a ceramic pot because metals can effect the colour, but I couldn't get my hands on one. You also should use a spare pot, not one you use for food.
Step 2. 15 minutes before the fabric was ready, I mixed 8 cups of water with 50g of tumeric and let simmer.
Step 3. I strained the salt water out of the fabric, squeezed out the excess moisture and dumped the wet fabric in with the tumeric mix. I did this in the laundry trough so that the fabric had more room to move. I stirred the fabric occasionally to get an even colour. I left it in the mix for about 45minutes.
Step 4. I rinsed the fabric until it was virtually clear and then hung to dry.
Step 5. I sewed the dress together. I cut the fabric before I put it in the pot to reduce the amount of fabric to dye. I bought thread to match after dying.

Unfortunately, today is tragically dreary and the thought of wearing this sunny dress seems wildly inappropriate. I couldn't even take my grey top off for the sake of the photos. So I'm afraid this will have to sit in storage until later in the year. Next time I might try dying some blacks and browns.


  1. have you tried washing the dress yet? just wondering how colourfast your dye is?

  2. No, not yet. Apparently tumeric isn't super colourfast so I do expect it will fade a little. It should be easy enough to dump back in a tumeric bath to freshen the colour, if needed. Having said that, bright yellow goes pretty far outside my grey/black uniform so not sure how many times I'll be needing to wash it!

  3. ahh I'm so happy you did this! It looks AMAZING. Now I'm less nervous to test it out myself

  4. I LOVE the colour and especially the way you've done it! Goooorgeous! Vx

  5. I LOVE the colour and especially the way you've done it! Goooorgeous! Vx


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