Today’s skirt turned out differently than I planned, which happens a lot in refashioning, amirite? It began as a pretty white cotton skirt, originally from JCrew.
Not bad, eh? But take a closer look…
The spot reminded me of that Seinfeld episode where George gives Elaine a discounted cashmere sweater with a tiny red dot on it that everyone’s eyes are instantly drawn to.
This spot was juuuuust like that…lurking right on the front of the skirt.
Since I liked the skirt, and it fit me fine, I decided to throw it in some dye to hide the spot. 🙂
My plan was to dye the skirt a lovely red in support of the Columbia Quad Squad, a roller derby team I was going to see play that night. I followed the instructions in the box by the letter.
I left the skirt in the bath for 30 minutes, once again…just doing that the instructions said would be sufficient.
…*sigh* And ended up with a lovely coral skirt. I didn’t have time to dwell on my dyeing failure, as I had to rush out the door to make it to a friend’s baby shower!
A friend of mine who uses dye all the time to make costumes and such told me that to get the true color on the box, I should leave the clothing in the dye bath for TWO HOURS. Whoa.
Even though I wasn’t able to wear red that night, (except for my faux garnet earrings), my roller derby friends were full of compliments for my *sigh* coral skirt. 🙂
The bout was awesome! Columbia Quadsquad beat the Texas Rollergirls soundly. I’m beginning to wonder if there’s anyone they can’t beat.
8 thoughts on “Day 10: Coral Reef Skirt (from Scarlet Dye!)”
I JUST died a favorite white Ann Taylor 100% cotton cocktail dress that was in great condition, except that I was starting to show its age because the white was starting to dull into almost yellow. I ALMOST gave this away to a thrift store when I spied the bottle of RIT Scarlet that was in a box of supplies my mom had given me after her latest garage sale.
Instead of putting the dress through the rinse cycle, I pulled out my big cast iron pot, filled it up 2/3rds with water, stuffed my dress in, and turned on the heat to a very low simmer. In went half the bottle of RIT (all that remained! Yay!), and I stood by the pot and constantly stirred, not really knowing whether my dress was getting burned at the bottom of the pot. Hey, it was an experiment after all!! :p
After 30 minutes, I could tell the dress was totally saturated ith the dye and was a deep scarlet, so I carefully poured the red dye down my sink. BIG MISTAKE!! As careful as I was, the dye still splashed around the sink well and STAINED my white resurfaced sink! Eek! More on that later…
Meanwhile, after rinsing my dress in cold water until the water ran clear, it still was a DEEP scarlet!! Still not convinced that it held its color, I washed it with a load of black clothes, and it came out GREAT! No coral at all!
I really think it was due to following the stovetop dye instructions on the bottle in lieu of the washing machine instructions. Try it next time you do any dying projects in scarlet and see if you get the same results I did!!
Finally, if I could do anything differently, I would have poured the dye down the utility sink in my laundry room instead of my kitchen sink…I just didn’t think of that at the time! I’m still new at this DIY stuff, and your blog has been a big inspiration for me! Meanwhile, my sink looks MUCH better after 20 minutes of scrubbing with Ajax with bleach. Phew!!
Thanks for the tip! I’m glad your sink survived! 🙂
i did the same thing with a white shirt, turned a lovely coral. I always just plan for lighter colors. But now that I have your friends advice, I will leave it in for 2 hours!! 🙂
I tried the same color (or similar) to dye a dress. It turned out the same color yours did! It was a salmon/coral color. It’s a nice color, but I would have preferred the dark red rusty color I was going for on my dress.
The Seinfeld referenced sweater makes me ponder what you would do with all that lovely cashmere if you’d gotten hold of it — definitely remove the offending shoulder pads (Elaine’s costumes are a great reference to mid-90s fashion), likely die it a fabu color, button up the cardi, possibly stitch up the vneck and tie on as a snuggly skirt!
I had the same result with a shirt that I dyed too, http://www.recycled-fashion.com/2011/06/unintentional-coral-dye.html. Your skirt looks lovely coral, loving the white stitching that shows through.
I am wondering if there is residual dye in the washing machine after that. I would be SCARED to put anything in the wash after using a red dye in there. You are a BRAVE girl! And…I really like the coral skirt – fab color!
I was nervous too! The instructions that come with the dye tell you to run the machine after you’ve dyed your item with just detergent and bleach to clean it out. I’ve washed a load of clothes (darks, to be on the safe side), and they came out just fine *whew!*. 🙂