Sunday, April 29, 2012

Easy Shirt Makeover

This weekend I discovered something and I'm not sure why I didn't before.  I have always seen these packages of Rit fabric dye, but I never really thought anything of it.  I finally put two and two together and realized that I can change the color of just about any item of clothing or accessory.  My life will never be the same! 
A few years ago, I got this sweater from Old Navy's winter clearance.

It's very nice.  It's soft and warm and well made.  But it has hung in my closet the last few years for one reason and one reason only:  the color.  Or lack thereof.  It doesn't go with anything I own, and I never wear it.  I was going to get rid of it this year.  I actually had already put it in the garage sale pile.  But then I remembered those fabric dyes.  And I remembered how earlier this fall, I really wanted an orange sweater but couldn't find one anywhere.  Light bulb!  I soooo wish I would have thought of this sooner, instead of at the end of the spring when it's going to be too warm to wear sweaters any day now. 
I have this large stockpot that I only use for making laundry detergent and liquid hand soap.  Since I don't use it for cooking, it was perfect for this project.  Anyway, the directions for dying are printed on the inside of the package, but basically you fill a large stockpot with hot water, then add one cup of salt, one tbsp of laundry detergent, and the package of dye.  This should go without saying, but you must use extreme caution when dying fabrics.  Wear old clothes and rubber gloves and be very very careful not to splash or spill anything.  Add your items to the pot, and use a wooden spoon to submerge them.  Along with my sweater, I threw in 2 pairs of white cotton undies just for fun.  Then carefully stir for 15-30 minutes while simmering on medium-low heat.

When it's done, take the entire pot to a laundry room/utility sink and dump out the dye water.  Using rubber gloves, rinse your items with warm water.  Gradually lower the temperature of the water until you are rinsing with cold water.  Keep rinsing until the water runs clear. 
Throw your items in the washer.  Then either put them in the dryer or hang to dry.
I was so happy with the results:
Now I have my beautiful orange sweater that I have been wanting for months!  And it only cost me $2.29 that I paid for the box of dye.  My husband loves it too because orange is one of his favorite colors.  I just hope I get a chance to wear it before it gets permanently warm.  I was planning to wear it to church today, but Angie woke up very sick and throwing up so we didn't get to go. 
I was so excited about my new found clothing-transformation trick that I had to go through all of mine and Angie's stuff to find more things to dye. 

Angie just received this white cotton hoodie in a bag of hand-me-downs.
I asked her if she wanted me to turn it pink and she got very excited and yelled yes!  But I decided to do something a little different with hers.  I tied it up tightly with yarn first:
And this is how it turned out:

She loves it!  I will definitely be doing this again soon.  It's only a matter of time before I find more boring, drab items that need makeovers!

No comments:

Post a Comment