Bright orange clothing dye: Safety Orange – Rit Dye


Fabric Dye Colour Guide | Tintex Fabric Dye

Create 100’s of new custom fabric dye colours using the core Tintex dyes. A basic sampling of colours is very versatile for many projects.
  1. Make any Tintex colour a pastel just by using less dye powder mixed with hot water (example: use a small amount of scarlet red for pastel pink).*Pink dye is available at Dollarama in 50g packaging or order 10-pound tubs at our store. 
  2. Stovetop hand dyeing gets the brightest or darkest colours. Use double the usual amount of dye to get the most deep or vibrant colours (example: black & scarlet red). Dyeing times may vary for each fabric, 30 – 60 minutes may be needed for darker/brighter results.
  3. When over-dyeing add the ‘complementary colour’ to neutralize a bright base from coming through when you dye Black or Charcoal Grey (example: existing scarlet red fabric + black + some forest green = black without red tones)
  4. Mix 2-3 dyes together to make a new colour. For best results do a dye colour test before.
      • Warmer Shade (example: brilliant yellow + brown)
      • Cooler Shade (example: midnight blue + charcoal grey)  
      • Different Colour (example: scarlet red + royal blue = purple) 

Existing colour can change the results, Colour Remover can help create a neutral base before dyeing. White cotton fabric dyes closest to package colour, but nylon, silk, rayon, and wool may dye lighter or darker. For best results

test your colour before and change amounts as needed.

Make a custom colour sample: cut a 12″ x 12″ swatch of fabric and measure dye with a teaspoon or tablespoon. Dissolve Tintex into 1 or 2 cups of very hot water. Each custom colour recipe may include full or partial measurements of teaspoons or tablespoons (example: 1/16, 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 tsp and/or Tbsp). Adjust the amount of dye as needed to get your desired custom colour. 

Make Pastels Using Any Tintex Dye

A small amount of any dye makes a pastel (example: use 1/16, 1/8 or 1/4 tsp of dye colour mixed with 1 cup hot water). Start with the smallest amount and add more dye or hot water as needed. 

1/8 tsp Cardinal Red + 1/8 tsp Tan Beige = Rose Quartz 


 1/8 tsp Midnight Blue + 1/8 tsp Charcoal Grey = Serenity 


1/8 tsp Brilliant Yellow = Cream


1/8 tsp Purple + 1/8 Midnight Blue  = Lilac/Pastel Purple


Adjust & Change Dye Colour
  • Get Warmer Colours: add a small amount of brilliant yellow, tangerine orange, scarlet or cardinal red dye (example: add brilliant yellow to make magenta a true red).



  • Get Cooler Colours: add a small amount of midnight blue, royal blue, navy blue, forest green, charcoal grey or black dye.  


  • Adjust Tone: add neutral colours like tan beige, brown or dark brown to tone down a bright colour.  


  • Darken Colours: add deep rich dyes like charcoal grey, black, dark brown or navy blue to make existing dyes deeper. The darkest dye available in the colour family will increase the intensity
    (example: use navy blue dye to make midnight blue deeper). 


  • Substitute Dyes: a Tintex dye from the same colour family can be used in a new dye formula. Colour results may vary depending on how light/dark the substituted colour is and how much dyed is used in the formula (example: cardinal red, scarlet red, tangerine orange).


Use double the usual amount of dye for projects using dark colours and bright colours. Get the most colour intensity when you use the hottest water possible for your fabric (example: use the stove top dyeing method, heat water with a kettle or use 140°F water).

Neutralize Bright Fabric When Over-Dyeing Darker 


Complementary colours are opposite on the colour wheel. They consist of primary (red, blue & yellow) and secondary (orange, green & purple) colours.

When dyeing a colourful fabric Black or Charcoal Grey (without using Colour Remover before) the original colour may show through. The solution is adding some of the complementary colour in with the dark dye, this will cancel out the original base colour showing through. 

  • Red base needs Forest Green (or mix Royal/Navy Blue & Brilliant Yellow) 
  • Orange base needs Royal/Midnight Blue
  • Yellow base needs Purple or Dark Plum (or mix Scarlet/Cardinal Red & Royal/Midnight Blue)
  • Green base needs Scarlet Red/Cardinal Red
  • Blue base needs Tangerine Orange (or mix Brilliant Yellow & Scarlet/Cardinal Red)
  • Purple base needs Brilliant Yellow

Mix New Dye Colours

You can change an original Tintex package colour just by adding another dye (example: one 55g package of brilliant yellow + one 55g package of kelly green makes a bright green).


  • 2017 Greenery This yellow green looks similar to Tintex Kelly Green. so you could use Kelly green alone or try mixing Brilliant Yellow + Kelly Green or Forest Green could be mixed with Brilliant Yellow for a deeper greenery theme colour. 

Use Kelly Green alone or mix Kelly Green + Brilliant Yellow = Greenery 

  • Mix different dyes together to change the original colour (example: 100% cotton terry fabric dyed with a colour formula of 2 tsp scarlet red + 1 tsp royal blue + 1 tsp purple + 1 cup of hot water to make shocking pink)

Scarlet Red + Royal Blue + Purple = Shocking Pink


  • Adding more of one dye than the other will change the colour (example: 100% cotton terry fabric is dyed midnight blue and a blue green sample is made with 1 Tbsp midnight blue + 1 1/4 tsp kelly green). 

Midnight Blue + Kelly Green = Blue Green 


  • Create classic neutrals like Marsala (example: 100% cotton terry is dyed a mixture of 2 tsp brown, 2 tsp scarlet red, and 1/4 tsp charcoal grey with hot water).
    Adjust the colour intensity to suit tour taste by changing the suggested amount of dye or substituting another dye in same colour family like dark brown, tan beige, beige, cardinal red or black. 

Brown + Scarlet Red + Charcoal Grey = Marsala


The Dye Colour Wheel

If you are dyeing your fabric a similar or darker colour you don’t always have to lighten before. You can get new colours by over-dyeing (example: red fabric turns purple if you dye it blue without lightening the colour before). See how the colours relate on the colour wheel: 

Basic Colour Theory For Dyeing:

Primary Colours: Red, Yellow & Blue combine to make all other colours.


Secondary Colours mix two primary colours (Red, Yellow or Blue) together.


Purple *called Violet in colour theory = (Red + Blue)  

Orange = (Red + Yellow)

Green = (Yellow + Blue)

Tertiary Colours: mix adjacent primary and secondary together Red Violet = (Red + Purple)
Red Orange  = (Red + Orange)
Yellow Orange  = (Yellow + Orange)
Yellow Green = (Yellow + Green)
Blue Green = (Blue + Green)
Blue Violet = (Blue + Purple)
Colours are opposite on the colour wheel (Orange & Blue, Yellow & Purple and Red & Green).  


Split Complementary Colour: Choose two colours on either side of a complementary colour (for example: Yellow, Blue Violet & Red Violet). 

Analogous: side by side on the colour wheel (Red, Red Orange & Orange). 

Monochromatic: different shades of the same colour extended using tints & tones 

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11 Best Clothing Dye Reviews in 2021 [Latest Picks]

Types of Dyes

Types of Dyes

Different types of dyes are suitable for different substrates. They tend to provide different level of depth and colorfastness results depending on the type of fabric. Let’s look at the common types in brief.

This is the best fabric dye type to dye cellulosic fibers like cotton, rayon, viscose, etc., and it comes in powder, liquid, and paste form. This class offers outstanding fastness properties as the dye particle gets fixed with fiber by means of strong covalent bonds.

Chemical assistants like salt, soda ash, and soap are required during dyeing with fiber reactive dyes. These things help in 3 major steps- exhaustion, fixation, and washing off, respectively. Although it is recommended for fabrics made of cellulosic fibers, protein fibers could also be dyed using acetic acid.

Also known as substantive dyes, applied on the substrate with the aid of salt and alkali. These cheap water-soluble anionic dyes are actually sodium salts of different acids, which are usually found to color cellulosic items; protein fibers can also be dyed, however. Being only stuck with the fiber (weak H-bond and Van der Waals’ force) can’t really come up with good fastness attributes.

Precise for dyeing protein fibers, they require very hot acidic conditions as these concentrated powders brilliantly color wool, silk, nylon, etc. Extra care is needed while treating delicates to avoid degradation. Although acid dyes create ionic and H-bonds alongside weak Van Der Waals’ force, don’t provide great color fastness, fast to sun, however.

  • All-Purpose or Union Dyes

These are multipurpose dyes deliberately manufactured for cellulosic and protein fibers and especially their blends. In the past, they didn’t offer so many outstanding attributes when compared to professional dyes. But now due to the advancement of manufacturing techniques, they can come out pretty handy. Typically, most of them are made from a mixture of direct and acid dyes. Some of them contain a leveling agent as well.

Easy and quick dyeing application, versatile and less equipment hassle are the reason people fall for these dyes.

These are cationic salts of organic bases that dissolve in alcohol but not readily in water, used to color specifically jute or acrylic fiber; can be first-rate when the shade is concerned but provides poor leveling order. Dyeing is carried out in weakly acidic setup with other necessary subordinates, while pH and temperature are maintained with superior authority.

The recommended class of dyes for coloring artificial hydrophobic fibers like polyester, nylon, acetate, acrylic, etc. These non-ionic sparingly soluble dyes have no affinity for any fiber whatsoever, so need to be trapped inside the fibers in extreme hot dyeing condition with the aid of intensifier.

Very costly natural colorant which comes in powder and paste form while allowing extensive shades to denim fabrics. The dyes need vatting in an alkaline environment before becoming water-soluble, provide brilliant results apart from the fastness to rubbing.

These water insoluble cut-price dyes are used in a large quantity to confer black and brown shades to cotton. Other pale tones are also produced, however, on a small scale. Like vat dyes, these need to be made water-soluble using reducing agents and then put in the alkaline dye bath. They yield moderate fastness properties.

Water insoluble coloring substances bring in brilliant orange, red and scarlet hues and exhibit excellent fastness properties; also low budget. Two distinct dye baths involved in dyeing where the color is developed and impregnated. Being hazardous should be handled with care.

Dyeing Methods

The techniques and the equipment you decide for dyeing something, whether it’s a fabric or bunch of yarns or barely the fiber, you always wish the outcome to be jolly perfect. So, going for an appropriate process and labor accordingly is important.

There are quite a few methods to choose from. It can be tie-dyeing, pole dyeing, dip dyeing, batik, low water immersion, different printing, painting freestyle, and many more. Different dyeing methods require different working conditions and are intended for the various end result.

When it comes to the machineries best fitted for your material, it’s the dyeing manual supplied with the dye packet where you look for the suitable dyeing process and precautions.

Take wool, for example; it dyes best in stovetop with acid dyes. So, it’s not just the dye! Rather it’s a successful manipulation of 3 wise choices (fiber type, dye, and method) while your ideas and creativity of make-doing also count.

Color Fastness

Fastness to different surrounding conditions could be a major fact while choosing best fabric dye because it’s very crucial where, when, and how you are using the dyed material as long as intensity and durability matters.

Fastness to wash, light and rub varies a lot according to the dye used and along the hues of the spectrum. Using fiber reactive dyes will offer the best color fastness to your cotton fabrics; however, it will be washed off completely while rinsing when applied to polyester.

Again, a deep-colored dress may fade quicker when exposed to the sun than a paler one. Moreover, not following secondary steps during dyeing, like pre-soaking or after-washing, can end up in a sorry story as far as fastness is concerned.

So, it’s all about how you improvise while selecting the best dye for your products alongside the subsequent dyeing method.


Ease of Application

Complexities may arise while fabric dyeing using different pigments, fabrics and techniques. Nowadays, people like it swift and without any hurdle. So, it’s pretty much a challenge for the dye manufacturers to shape them as much user friendly as possible.

The ease of application of a particular dye largely depends on its properties; whether it is water-soluble or not, does it sublime during dyeing, what chemical assistants it requires, available forms and shades and many more facts.

Dyeing methods (immersion, dip, batik etc) and equipments (Stove, washer, color tubes etc) are also decided considering these attributes.

For instance, disperse dyes have to be trapped inside the fabric using extreme hot acidic condition in a machine and the process runs quite for a while, clearly not a fun activity, but the capability of coloring hydrophobic synthetic fibers better than other dyes makes it unique.

In a contradictory fashion, fiber reactive dyes are exhausted and fixed in lukewarm to warm alkaline conditions. They may be colorfast but not appropriate for dyeing manmade fibers. But, you can use stove or handmade dye bath, one thing you can’t while disperse dyeing.

Moreover, the odor, fume or color splashes into surrounding experienced during fabric dyeing can also have a significant effect on the selection of dye. We recommend you picking a dye wisely as the easiness of the application is certainly defined by the fabric standards, chosen dyeing method, ultimately the dye itself.

Rosalie’s Medieval Woman – Dyes and Colours











Medieval Dyestuffs, Dyeing & Colour Names

The rural medieval woman was often responsible for dyeing her own fabric using natural substances which were collected locally. Her city counterpart often had the luxury of purchasing fabric which was already dyed with superior substances and better mordants providing richer colours which lasted longer.

Dyeing and dyestuffs is a huge topic, so what you’ll see here is a very brief overview of dyeing and dyestuffs in medieval England and Europe. For a more comprehensive look at dyes, dyestuffs and natural dyeing, visit the links page.

The detail at right comes from 1482, the Liber de Natura Rerum, a Flemish manuscript which shows dyers stirring a vat of cloth.

Natural dyes came from various sources, the most common ones are listed below:

red – madder root, Rubia tinetorum, kermes or grana from insects
blue – woad leaves, Isatia tinctoria
violet – orchil from lichen
crimson – brasilwood from the East India tree
purple – brasilwood from the East India tree
yellow – weld, dyers’ rocket, turmeric, saffron, onion skin, marigold, chamomile
green – indigo, weld, turmeric
brown – walnut shells, bark

Red dye which came from madder was significantly more expensive than the blue dye which came from woad. The root of the madder plant required for the red dye was only harvested once a year, whereas the leaves of the woad plant could be gathered several times throughout the year, making it a more available product.

Flanders was a particularly successful area for fabric production and dying. The rich soil was good to grow plants used for dyeing and the area had an abundance of Fuller’s Earth which was used for cleansing of wool.

One historic dye book which gives recipes and instructions on making dye is the German Innsbruck Manuscript from 1330. A selection of dye recipes are included below.

– Take filings and rusty iron and soft pitch, and let it boil long together; that makes a good brown on a red fabric.

– Take green nutshells and grind them together and let them rot seven days in a pot, and therewith make a black dye.
– Whoever wants to make black dye, he takes oak galls and pulverizes them and adds alum thereto and boils it in a skillful way with alum and in urine and dyes therewith; if he wants to make it darker, add black dye thereto.

– Take chalk in a pot and pour water thereon and mix it well together and let it sink to the bottom of the pot so that the water becomes clear and and take that same water and boil the brazilwood well therin, until it is cooked and then mix in alum and with it dye red zendel (a thin silken material).
– Whoever wants to dye whatsoever he wills red, takes cinnabar and rubs it well on a hard stone with alum-water and uses that to dye with. If he wants to make a red color darker, he mixes it with black dye or with verdigris and adds alum thereto; then he cooks everything in lime water and takes brasilwood and boils everything in human urine.
– Also, brasilwood mixed with alum, mixed with lime water or with urine.
– One should take lead oxide and should boil it with lime water/vinegar, upon which the colour becomes the colour of tiles, and should mix it with alum, and a flower in the field named zindlot should also be boiled in alum-water and strain it through a cloth, and dye therewith.
– One should take crabs and boil them well in water and throw out of the pot everything within the shells and boil the rest. Grind well in a mortar, and strain through a cloth and mix it well with alum, upon which the color becomes reddish; or if one wishes to make the color darker, add verdigris thereto.
– Take brasil wood and maple as much as you wish and boil it well in lime water and take then alum and gum arabic thereto, so the brasilwood and the maple are well cooked, then let the alum and gum arabic seeth together, and therewith color red upon white.

– Whosoever wishes to make yellow dye, takes orpiment and mixes it with alum, cooked in lime water, and dyes therewith.
– One should take barberries and peel the outer rind off; then one should peel off the green and boil it with alumwater and add brasilwood thereto and orpiment and dye therewith.

– To make a green dye, take verdigris and boil it in urine and mix alum thereto and a portion of gum arabic, and dye therewith; to make the color lighter, take the same color and add orpiment and mix it with alum, cooked in lime water and dye therewith.
– One should take elder and boil it in alumwater, that makes a green color and also a black, if one mixes it with a bit of black color.

– Whoever wishes to make a fast blue, take ground lapis lazuli pigment in lime water and boil it with gum arabic and with alum and dye therewith. If he wishes to make it dark, add black dye thereto and blue flowers which stand in the field, and mash it well and boil it in urine and mix it with alum and dye therewith.
– Take the leaves of a dwarf elder and mash them and take indigo and add thereto and grind it together and let them dry together for a long time and take lime water and let it seethe together and then take alum and grind it thereto while it’s all hot. Paint it on white fabric, and it will become a good blue.

Mordants and fixatives
By 1200, Europe imported alum from Sicily and North Africa which was used as a mordant for fixing the colours in woolen cloth. The purpose of the mordant is to assist the dye in sticking to the material. It also improves the permanence, colorfastness and light fastness of the dye itself. Some mordants change the tone of the colour of the dye. Iron was used to darken colors or to tone down brightness and was often used as a post-dye bath.

Ammonia, readily available to all walk of life in the form of stale urine, was a key ingredient in processing woad. It was also used to adjust the acidity levels which alters colors in various dyes, like madder.

The mordant most in use over the medieval period was alum, which could be used both in the dye bath or as a pre-mordant. Alum brightens colors without really changing the color itself. Too much alum can make woolen fibres sticky and tartaric acid was often used with to counteract this. Finds from Coppergate show the use of club moss which was used an alternative to mined alum. The moss is high in natural alum and was useful in areas where alum was difficult to obtain.

Copper is another metal-based mordant which was widely used. It tends to add a blue-greenish cast to dyes. In many cases, dyeing in a copper pot might be all that was required to mordant the fibres.

Notes about colours
It must be noted that just because it was possible for a colour to be dyed, it did not mean that it was instantly adopted by all walks of life. Many colours were deemed unsuitable for the peasant class. Bright colours, it was thought, were not humble and engendered a feeling of pride which was a mortal sin. Peasants should remember where it was that God had seen fit to place them, and they should not desire anything other than God’s will.

Clothing in greys, browns and muted blues were thought most suitable for the lower class. This did not mean that peasants were dowdy. Greys and browns were available in a number of shades and clever colour coordination of hoods and tunics could still make for an attractive ensemble. Blue was a colour which was available to most classes, both cheaply and expensively, in all shades ranging from muted, sombre blues to brilliant jewel blues of the upper classes.

Scarlet was a fabric which was also known as a colour– causing great confusion in clothing inventories, scarlet the cloth and scarlet the colour often being misinterpreted. Scarlet, the fabric, was an expensive fabric and limited to the very highest echelons of society. The dye process used a certain amount of kermes for all of the colours it was produced in- red, grey, black, dark grey and dark blue- not just for the bright red colour scarlet.


Medieval Colour Names
Many and varied are the names of colours used in medieval times. When reading through manuscripts or old books, colours referred to may be hard to distinguish. Listed below are those that I’ve personally come across and their modern colour descriptions. Many of these are obsolete today.

abraham brown
abram brown
aurnola orange

bowdy scarlet
biffe “blotted out” stripes
brassel red
brasil bright red
bristol red
brun brown
brunetta lighter brown
burel dark red woollen
burnet brown

carnation raw flesh colour
carsey yellow
cendre dark grey
cendryn grey
celestrine light blue
checkery checked cloth
ciclaton originally scarlet, then cloth of gold
cramoisy crimson, bright red
crocus yellow
cyclas purple


echiqueles checked fabric

falwe yellow

garance madder
gingerline reddish-violet
goose-turd yellowish green
graine cochineal red
gris grey
grisart light grey
gris brun drab
gris cindre ash grey
gris pommelle dapple grey
gros de dos d’asne donkey grey

bright tan

incarnate red
inde indigo blue, azure blue
isabelle yellow or light buff

jaune bright yellow


lincoln green
lustie-gallant light red

maidenhair bright tan
marble parti-coloured
medley a mixture of colours
mezereon rose-purple
milk-and-water bluish white
murrey deep claret or purplish-red made from mulberry juice


orange tawny orange brown

paonace peacock
pavonalilis peacock
pear russett red
pers deep blue
perse bluish grey
plombes leaden grey
plonquies leaden grey
plunket medium blue or grey-blue
plunket celestyne sky blue
popinjay green or blue
puce purple of reddish tone
puke purple of reddish tone. Also described as dirty brown
purpure purple


rats colour dull grey
roy bright tawny
russett a dark brown

sad dark tint of any colour
sanguin blood red
sangwyn blood red
scarlet bright red
sheeps colour neutral
stammel red

tanne tan, tawny
tawny dusky orange brown
tenne tawny orange brown
toley bright red
turkils turquoise


verdulet bright bluish green
vermel bright red
vermeil vermillion, bright red
vermillion bright red
vert green
violet purple

watchet pale greenish blue
woad blue


ynde indigo blue
yellow-carsey yellow



Dye Color Plant Common Name (Additional Colors)
Yellow Dyes Yarrow (green, black)
Honey Locust
Golden wild-indigo (green)
Tall cinquefoil (black, green, orange, red)
Pecan (brown)
Indiangrass (brown, green)
Orange Dyes Western comandra (brown, yellow)
Prairie Bluets (brown, yellow)
Bloodroot (brown, yellow)
Sassafras (black, green, purple, yellow)
Eastern Cottonwood (black, brown, yellow)
Plains Coreopsis (black, green, yellow, brown)
Red Dyes Ozark chinkapin (black, yellow, brown)
Sumac (yellow, green, brown, black)
Prairie Parsley (yellow, brown)
Slippery Elm (brown, green, yellow)
Black Willow (black, green, orange, yellow)
Purple / Blue Dyes Indian blanket (black, green, yellow)
Hairy coneflower (brown, green, yellow, black)
Red Mulberry (brown, yellow, green)
Mountain alder (brown, red, orange)
Summer Grape (orange, yellow, black)
Black Locust (black, green, yellow, brown)
Green Dyes Butterfly milkweed (yellow)
Texas Paintbrush (green, red, yellow)
Basket flower (yellow)
Sagebrush (yellow, gray)
Stinging nettle
Goldenrod (yellow, brown)
Gray Dyes Iris (black)
Butternut (brown)
Canaigre Dock (yellow, green, brown)
Brown Dyes Prickly poppy (green, orange, yellow)
Texas Paintbrush (green, red, yellow)
Elderberry (yellow)
Downy Phlox (brown, green, yellow)
Black Dyes Northern Catalpa (brown, yellow)
Sumac (yellow, red, green, brown)
May-apple (brown, yellow)
Sand Evening Primrose (green, orange, red, yellow)

How to Dye Fabric – The Do’s & Don’ts : Room for Tuesday

As I mentioned earlier this week, we spent the weekend working on a basement project which involved drapery panels from IKEA. It’s easy to use inexpensive curtains that fit the budget if you’re going for a minimalistic or neutral look, but when it comes to color- let’s be honest… IKEA doesn’t have a great range of colors to choose from. After bringing home three different options and not really loving any of them, I thought- “I should just dye them”. Yes, it sounds a little intimidating to mix a custom color and manipulate fabric or textiles to produce your envisioned outcome, but it’s really not as difficult as you might expect. Click through for an easy tutorial, and a few “do’s and don’ts”. I’ve had plenty of both over the years and it’s about time I shared! You can also catch a sneak peek of my finished drapery in the basement. 

If you’ve been following along for awhile now, you already know I have a background in textiles and used to do this sort of thing allllll the time during my time in art school. I was constantly in the dye lab experimenting. It was something I really enjoyed. It’s weird to think I used to work with fabric on a weekly basis and this is the first time I’ve dyed something in years. I will say- I was a little rusty, which led to this post. Consider this your guide for what to do and what NOT to do if you also want to change the color of your curtains or fabric.

Here are some quick rules or facts to know before you get started (these may or may not be obvious, but just in case)

  1. You can dye fabric darker, bolder, or more saturated, but it can NOT go lighter than the current color.
  2. Dying fabric a solid, uniform color is more difficult than an organic or accidental pattern (like shibori).
  3. If your fabric turns out splotchy- don’t panic… you can “overdye” it.
  4. The larger the item or fabric is, the more difficult it will be to dye.
  5. Always test your dye lot and color before adding the fabric.
  6. There is a specific dye you should use for each material or fabric.


I purchased these Tibast cotton curtain panels from IKEA (pictured above) and wasn’t into the color for my space. I really needed a deep navy curtain. Obviously, that’s the reason for this post- because I decided to dye them. Here’s how I did it…

Step 1 // Choose your dye. Given my curtains were 100% cotton, I used this Rit dye- which is made for natural materials. They also make a dye for synthetic materials. Check your fabric and determine what dye is best for your project.

Step 2 // Soak or prewash your fabric. I gave my fabric a good soak in warm water in my kitchen sink. Saturating the fabric with water will help it dye evenly.

Step 3 // Find a dye container. While the fabric is soaking in water, prep your dye bath. Begin by finding a container large enough to fit your fabric. The larger the container- the easier this project will be! I started with a 5 gallon bucket and quickly realized that wasn’t the best option. The plastic totes gave me more room to agitate and maneuver the fabric.

Step 4 // Mark your container. I made a fill line mark on my containers with a sharpie so I could consistently dye my fabric. Having a “fill line” helped me fill the containers without measuring the water every single time.

Step 5 // Add the ingredients. I added hot tap water to my fill line, 1 cup of rock salt, 4 ounces of navy dye, and 2 ounces of black dye. I stirred the dye bath until everything was dissolved and evenly combined.

Step 6 // Test the color and drop in the fabric. Next, carefully dunk a white paper towel or scrap piece of cloth into the dye bath to check your color. If everything looks good, submerge your fabric. I dyed 1 curtain panel at a time.

Step 7 // Agitate. If you want your fabric to dye evenly, set a timer and agitate it every 5-10 minutes. I journaled each cycle so I could keep track… agitate, wait 7 minutes, agitate, wait 7 more, agitate, etc. Basically, you want to make sure the fabric is being moved around and isn’t creased or folded on itself… any resistance will come out of the dye bath lighter or splotchy. By agitating, you can ensure dye is getting to every single spot and completely covering the fabric. I left my fabric submerged in the dye bath for 30 minutes, but you can leave it up to 60 minutes, depending on how dark or saturated you want the color.

Step 8 // Rinse. Carefully remove the fabric from the dye bath and rinse it with cold water until the water runs clear. I just used the garden hose for this, to keep the mess outside.

Step 9 // Wash. Next, add the fabric to the washing machine with a mild or gentle detergent. I washed on warm because I was trying to get my curtain panels to shrink.

That’s it! I tumbled my fabric dry and everything looked pretty good and even. Again… it took some trial and error to learn the process and figure out how to dye evenly, so I figured sharing some “do’s and don’s” might be helpful. This is how they turned out…

  • Use a spacious container.
  • Confirm the dye is compatible with your fabric / material.
  • Set an agitation timer.
  • Wear old clothes and rubber gloves (it gets pretty messy).
  • Journal your formula, dye time, and additional notes.
  • Test your color before adding fabric to the dye bath.
  • Use a measuring cup.
  • Forget to wet the fabric before dying
  • Forget to set your agitation timer.
  • Eyeball measurements.
  • Skip the salt or vinegar.
  • Overcrowd the dye bath.
  • Be afraid to mix different dye colors.

I think that’s it! Let me know if you have any questions. I dyed a BUNCH of curtains for our basement project that I’ll be sharing soon. I dyed 16 panels- whew! It was a lot of work, but the end result was well worth it and I saved a ton of money doing this myself. I also ended up with the *perfect* color. It definitely looks like high-end custom drapery and I’m hoping nobody will notice I spent less than $200.

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Founder & Creative Director

Experimenting with Naturally Dyed Clothing

The Clean Color collection represents the next step in Patagonia’s journey to change the industry. “Each season, we work on finding new ways to minimize our environmental footprint,” Hayes says. “Most of the time, it’s not an easy route.” (But then neither were Yvon Chouinard’s early ascents in Yosemite or his first experiments with making climbing chocks.) “We often introduce these innovations in smaller, ‘direct’ collections, as they are experiments,” Seltzer explains. “Ideally, we then apply them to our entire line, like we did with recycled wool.”

It took Hayes and her team close to three years to find, test and bring the dyes for the Clean Color collection to market. “Sarah and her team invested a lot of time and research in finding petroleum-free dyes that meet our quality standards,” Seltzer says. The process began with Patagonia intern, Hunter Hendrick, working closely with Hayes and Courtney Merritt, Senior Material Manager, to do a deep research dive on the pros and cons of natural dyes and identify opportunities within the existing supply chain—and beyond—to commercialize. Next, the project moved to the regular team of Hayes and Merritt plus Laura Tripp, Material Developer, Knits, and Alli Lapierre, Testing and Standards Engineer, to focus development with a specific supply chain partner, select material and dye combinations, facilitate wear test samples and measure environmental impacts.

The Clean Color collection includes both natural and biosynthetic dyes comprised of 96 percent renewable resources (primarily agricultural waste). “Earthcolors by Archroma® is a similar dye platform to our advanced denim,” Hayes says, adding that these dyes perform like their synthetic, sulphur dyeclass counterparts, in the ways in which they affix to a textile, allowing it to wash down, creating a beautiful, faded color effect.

The dyes themselves are a blend of ancient techniques and modern technology. For example, powdered cochineal beetles are the basis of the rosy color in Patagonia’s Clean Carmine Pink. The cochineal beetle (Dactylopius coccus) is technically not a beetle with wings and legs, it’s a scale insect that feeds on prickly pear cactus and is found primarily in Central and South America. The red color comes from the bodies of the females, which contain carminic acid to repel predators. In fact, carmine was once so valuable that the Aztec Emperor Montezuma levied a special tax on his subjects that was paid in these prized insects.



Shevchenko D.T. 1


Nikitina S.B. 1


The text of the work is placed without images and formulas.
The full version of the work is available in the “Work files” tab in PDF format


We often see stains on home clothes. Some stains are caused by tea, coffee and other food products, many of them we cannot remove no matter how hard we try.

The idea for my project came about when a beetroot stain appeared on my home jersey. A red stain that we could not remove. The fabric on the T-shirt was dyed with beet juice, which contained natural substances that could dye the fabric. I wanted to know what other vegetables, fruits, plants can dye fabric and wool.

Vegetable paints were one of the first paints that people began to use to decorate themselves, their weapons, home and clothing.At first, it was the juices of flower petals, leaves and fruits, which attracted the attention of a person with their bright color, then a person learned to extract paint from the roots and bark.

Natural dyes have no rivals in the richness of shades and midtones they create. Plant pigments give deep and soft colors that, even at high intensity, do not look flashy. Fabrics dyed with such dyes do not fade during washing, do not fade in the sun, and are safe for health.

Dyeing fabrics or yarns with natural organic pigments has its roots in antiquity. Through the centuries-old practice of dyeing, from all the variety, those dyeing representatives of the flora were selected, which ensured high quality, beauty and durability.

Natural dyes have been known for a very long time, from ancient times. They became widespread during the development of manufacturing production and were of great importance until the second half of the 19th century.At that time, natural dyes were the only dyeing agent. With the development of the organic synthesis industry, especially the aniline-paint industry, natural dyes could not compete with synthetic dyes, since they are less expensive and more resistant to natural influences, and, in general, have lost their practical value. However, some of the natural dyes are still used in the food, light and cosmetic industries, for restoration work, in analytical chemistry and for other purposes.

For this I have set the following goal:

  1. Study the properties of natural dyes and the plants from which they can be obtained.

For this, I set the following tasks:

To study the literature on plants, berries and vegetables containing natural dyes.

– obtaining vegetable dyes from natural raw materials: oak bark, bird cherry bark, crushed tansy flowers, walnut shells, beets, turmeric, cinnamon, sage leaves, red cabbage.

– to carry out experiments on dyeing fabric and wool.

– to establish what natural substances can enhance the color;

– set how long the dyed fabric will retain its color (whether the obtained color will remain after washing).

-determine which method of fixing the color on the fabric is the most effective.

Object of research: vegetable dyes.

Subject of research: properties of vegetable dyes .

I. Main part.

    1. From the history of the use of dyes

Historical information about the coloring of various household items, clothes, household utensils and even people themselves dates back to antiquity.It is known that the art of dyeing first developed in the countries of Asia and from there it was transferred to Carthage. Dyed fabrics were exported from dyes of Carthage to Rome and Athens. The preserved painted objects indicate that she used substances of mineral and organic origin for dyeing: colored clays, metal oxides, substances contained in various parts of plants and in the organisms of some animals.

For dyeing fibrous products, materials of plant origin were mainly used: tree bark, leaves, fruits, flowers, roots.Plants with a significant content of dyes usually grow in hot climates; In part, this explains why the art of dyeing developed precisely in the countries of Asia, Africa and America, and then spread to countries with a temperate climate. The countries of Europe received dyeing plants in the frying countries, however, Europe also had its own plants traditionally used for dyeing, such as waida, mignonette, etc.

The dyers of antiquity made interesting discoveries in their craft, which allowed them, having at their disposal only a few dozen natural dyes, to obtain up to 800 colors and shades.They discovered the secret of the formation of colored “varnishes” – a method of obtaining a variety of colors on fabric using salts of various metals (mordans, or stains) from just one dye. The ability to form “varnishes” is explained by the property of most natural organic dyes (called mordants) in the presence of transition metal salts to give strong water-insoluble dye-metal cation-fiber complexes. To increase the capacity for complexation, tissues were treated, in addition to metal salts, with tartaric acid salts or tannins.These techniques were used with great skill, for example, in the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean (Palestine and Egypt) at the beginning of our era. Modern researchers find in tissues from these countries almost always not one mordant, but a mixture of salts of iron, aluminum, zinc, copper, chromium. It is interesting that these blue, red, brown products contain tin – a mordant rediscovered in Europe only in the XYII century. To fix the color on cotton fabrics, tannin-containing substances were used simultaneously with metal salts.A persistent crimson color on cotton when using madder was achieved by using an oil mordant, which gives cotton the ability to combine with metal salts and dyes, in particular with alizarin. Mareva contains mainly two dyes – purpurin and alizarin. The dyers of antiquity knew how to isolate purple and use only it to obtain a more carmine shade of dyed fabric than when dyeing with madder itself. Ancient craftsmen were able to imitate purple with indigo, madder, tannin and iron.

The greatest discoveries of antiquity include indigo dyeing. With the help of indigo blue and various yellow dyes, the craftsmen managed to obtain numerous shades of green, since in nature there are practically no persistent green dyes for fabrics.

Dyeing in ancient times often consisted of numerous stages, and to obtain the desired color, fabrics could be dyed for several weeks. Dyeing was revered as an art.

At the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries, the art of dyeing with natural dyes was practically lost. The first synthetic dyes, bright and relatively easy to use, displaced natural dyes from the practice of not only industrial, but also artisanal dyeing of fabrics and yarns. Over the course of just a few decades, most of the ancient recipes have been forgotten and lost.

    1. Dyes from plants

From literary sources, we found out which plants can be used to obtain dyes of a certain color.

Yellow paint

Barberry – shrub. The coloring matter is obtained from bark, roots and wood.

Birch – the coloring matter is contained in the leaves and young bark; leaves and bark are harvested in early summer; from the leaves, a bright yellow paint is obtained, from the bark – a yellowish one.

Angular cornflower – leaves paint silk and wool.

Turmeric – Spice powder, yellow coloring matter.

Tansy – flowers will color the fabric yellow.

Blue paint

Vaida (blue, blue, farbovnik) – grows in the temperate zone of Russia, the coloring matter is contained in the leaves.

Cornflower – The coloring matter is found in the petals of flowers.

Buckwheat – growing wild on the shores of the Caspian Sea. The coloring matter in the leaves is a deep blue (indigo).

Blackberry – the berries are dyed dark blue.

Blueberries – berries dye wool soaked with alum (1:10) purple.

Meadow sage – the grass paints a dark blue color.

Lycopodium Lycopodium – herbaceous plant; coloring matter in the plant stem.

Forest geranium – coloring agent in flowers.

Litmusnik – grows in the Crimea. The grass dyes the coat purple, known to the French as Tournesol.

Green colors

Elderberry – they do not use ripe berries, as for red paint, but elderberry leaves, which give a good green color.

Bird cherry – the inner bark turns green.

Poplar – the inner bark dyes the yarn green, the yarn must be pre-moistened with iron sulfate (1:10).

Marsh horsetail, iron man, squirrel tail, – grows everywhere; the colorant in the stem produces a green color.

Sorrel – grows almost everywhere; coloring matter in the leaves.

Juniper – grows almost everywhere; colorant in berries.

Ruta and Iris Blossom – The juice of these, mixed together, gives a lasting green color.

Privet a – the berries color the wool in, dark green.

Brown paint

Cherry – The coloring matter is in the branches, leaves.

Oak – The coloring matter is in the bark.

Onions – The coloring matter is in the husk.

Lichens, sticks, oak paws – grows almost everywhere, on the ground and stones. Lichen growing on rocks gives a particularly strong brown color.

Black alder – widespread in the temperate zone of Russia, the coloring matter in the leaves, young branches and bark.

Dry buckthorn bark – gives a brown color,

Plum tree bark – gives a brown color.

Serpukha grass – dyes linen and silk fabrics.

Horse sorrel – its root, dug in the fall, gives a brown color.

Red paint

Beetroot – The coloring matter is found in root crops.

Buckthorn, wolf berries – the same as for yellow color; for red, not the bark is collected, but young branches and leaves before flowering.

Madder dye or speck – grows in the south, in the Crimea, Transcaucasia; a dye in the root of a plant that is dug up before flowering.

Elderberry – shrub, grows almost everywhere; colorant in ripe berries.

Vetla – bark boiled in lye, dyes silk and wool.

Oregano – the grass dyes the wool.

Wild poppy – juice from flowers dyes silk, wool, linen, pre-soaked in a solution of 2 parts of alum, one hour of vinegar and 6 hours of water.

Blackthorn – bark, boiled with lye, dyes the wool.

Privet – berry juice mixed with ammonia or Glauber’s salt.

Boil fernambuk mahogany wood chips with the addition of 2 – 3% alum (or potash). Gives not only red, but also yellow, orange, purple, violet colors.

Gray paint

Spruce – the bark dyes the wool.

Walnut shell – light gray color.

Periwinkle – The grass dyes the wool in a dark gray color.

Water lily – the root dyes cotton and flax.

Broom – The bark is dark gray.

Bearberry – the leaves dye the wool light gray.

Clefthoof – dyes the coat dark gray.

    1. Basic conditions and rules for dyeing.

  1. Staining is carried out in a well-ventilated area.

  2. Do not use dishes in which food is prepared for dyeing.

Copper, aluminum, iron dishes changes the shade of the fiber dyed with vegetable dye, therefore etching and staining must be carried out in enamel or glassware. The crockery must be large enough so that the solution completely covers the loose yarn or fabric.

  1. It is advisable to take rainwater or water softened with soda ash.

  2. The wooden (plastic, glass) stick used for stirring the material to be painted must be clean and smooth.

  3. Before dyeing, fabric and yarn must be well moistened with water.The material to be painted must have good wettability. The fabric, dyed without preliminary preparation, gives, as they say, “unpainted”.

    1. Preparation of natural fabrics for dyeing.

In my project, I decided to use various materials for painting:

  1. White cotton fabric.(photo # 1)

Photo No. 1 Photo No. 2 Photo No. 3

  1. Linen fabric of white color (photo No. 2)

  2. Woolen (sheep) threads of white color (photo # 3)

In order to paint the selected materials, it is necessary to carry out special preparation before painting.

Cotton fabrics and linen fabrics are boiled before dyeing to improve wettability. For dyeing in light colors, harsh cellulose fabrics are bleached. Before dyeing, unbleached cotton or linen material is boiled for 1 hour in this solution: 1 liter of water 2-3 grams of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 grams of laundry soap. In this case, the water should completely cover the yarn or fabric. (for 100g. of material 3 liters.water). After washing, the material is rinsed 2-3 times in warm water until the soap completely disappears, which interferes with uniform dyeing.

To prepare woolen yarn , you need to grate baby soap, then dissolve in a small amount of hot water (60 degrees). The soap solution is poured into warm water and the foam is whipped. In this water, the yarn is washed, lightly wringing and turning over. The soap solution is changed several times until the water is clear.It is not necessary to make the washing solution too hot, as this darkens the wool and breaks down. As our experiments have shown, synthetic detergents (washing powder) change the color shade. The washed wool is thoroughly washed in running water, then a little vinegar (9%) is added to wash it off the soap and then rinse again.

When dyeing the fabric with berries, to prepare the fabric for dyeing, add half a cup of salt to 8 glasses of water, put the fabric in the solution and simmer for about an hour over low heat.

When dyeing the fabric with vegetables, use a vinegar solution: add four parts of water to one part of vinegar, put the cloth in the solution and simmer for about an hour over low heat.

In both cases, after boiling, remove the cloth and rinse in cold water.

    1. Preparation of dye decoctions.

Dyes can be obtained from the branches of leaves, fruits, peels, bark, plant roots.

Both fresh and dried plants are used. When dyed with fresh plants, brighter and more intense colors are obtained, but usually less lightfast.

Leaves, stems, roots, flowers, fruits, cones, bark are pre-soaked in soft cold water for 12 hours (from morning to evening). For every 100g. herbs take about 1 liter of water. After that, the plants are brought to a boil in the same water and kept on very low heat, “tormented”, but not boiled.Flowers and herbs “languish” for 30 minutes, and bark, stems, walnut shells, roots for 2-4 hours. It is not recommended to further extract dyes from plants, as the color of the broth becomes brown. After extracting the dye, the decoction is poured into another dish, filtering it, and the plants are again poured with water to get a second decoction. Herbs and bark “torment” for 30 minutes. Filter the second one into the same dish where the first one.

Then a dye bath is prepared, the required amount of water is added to the resulting broth.

    1. What is mordant. Methods of pickling.

SPRAY – (dye fixer), in dyeing processes – chemicals that interact with dye or dyed fabrics, or both, to “fix” the dye on the fabric, so that the dye is practically not washed out. Many mordants are HYDROXIDES or metal salts (eg ALUM).

There are natural mordants, formic acid, sauerkraut brine, salt, vinegar, birch ash, and rust.

There are several ways to etch.

  1. Simultaneous etching.

The prepared mordant solution is poured into the dye decoction, clean wet yarn and cloth are immersed in it.Then “torment” for 30-40 minutes at 60 degrees.

  1. Subsequent mordant.

First, the yarn is “tormented” in the dye decoction for 30 minutes, then transferred to the prepared mordant solution and kept for 25 minutes at 60 degrees.

  1. Practical Research.

    1. Methods for preparing natural mordants.

  1. Mordant – sauerkraut juice.

Finely chop the cabbage, carrots, put in an enamel pan, add salt and add a little water to get more sauerkraut juice, and place under

by oppression into a warm place for sourdough.

After 3 days, the mordant in the form of cabbage juice is ready for use.

  1. Mordant – rust.

Infusion of rust is one of the variants of natural ecological staining of fabrics and fibers when dyed with natural dyes. Rust is actually an iron cation that, when combined with various natural dyes, has various interesting effects.

Materials for preparation: 1 kg iron nails, container, vinegar, water.

To prepare the rust, we took 1 kg of iron nails and washed it with a cleaning agent (since nails are treated with machine oil). Then placed in a container and filled with warm water 2.5 liters. New iron nails rust slowly; to enhance the oxidation process, 3 tablespoons of 70% vinegar were added after 10 hours.

    1. Experiments on staining.

Yellow paint

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with tansy.

Materials: tansy, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, mordant (sauerkraut juice), white woolen threads, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric and wool using tansy flowers.

Assumption: the fabric may turn yellow.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling in a solution for 1 hour (1 l.water 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

First, we soaked the crushed tansy flowers in a glass container for 12 hours. After 12 hours, we poured the soaked tansy flowers into an enamel bowl (volume 2 liters) and put it on gas. The substance was brought to a boil, and then “simmered” over low heat for 45 minutes.A dark brown solution was obtained. Strain the substance through cheesecloth into a glass container, put the rest of the thick into an enamel container, fill it with water and boil for 30 minutes

The resulting solution, from secondary boiling, was added to a glass container. For staining, the resulting solution was poured into an enamel container, 200 mil cabbage brine was added there.and brought to a boil, put cotton cloth, linen cloth, woolen threads into the solution and boiled for 45 minutes.

Then they turned off and allowed to cool. They took out dyed fabric and woolen threads and dipped them into water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

The threads of wool were dyed yellow, cotton and linen were dyed pale, dirty yellow.We have found that wool threads are dyed better than fabrics.

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with turmeric

Materials: turmeric, glass bowl, enamel bowl, wooden spatula, white woolen thread, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with turmeric.

Assumption: maybe the fabric and wool will turn bright yellow.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling it in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water, 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

We took 4 teaspoons of turmeric and put it in a glass container and poured 0.5 liters with filtered, boiled water.

Stirred with water, filtered and poured into an enamel container, put on fire and brought to a boil. As soon as the solution has boiled, put the cloth and wool threads in it and boil for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, remove the fabric and woolen threads from the solution and dry in daylight.After drying, the dyed fabric and woolen threads were dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed bright yellow. All samples were evenly stained with a bright yellow color.All samples were colored the same.

Brown stain.

3. Dyeing of fabric and woolen threads with oak bark.

Materials: oak bark, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, mordant (sauerkraut juice), white woolen threads, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with oak bark.

Assumption: the fabric may turn brown.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing, boiled in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water, 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g.laundry soap).

First, we soaked the crushed oak bark in a glass container for 12 hours.

After 12 hours, we transferred the soaked bark and colored water to an enamel bowl (volume 2 liters) and put it on gas. The substance was brought to a boil, and then “simmered” over low heat for 2 hours.Received a solution of red – brown color.

The substance was filtered through cheesecloth into a glass container, the rest of the bark was put back in an enamel container, filled with water and boiled for 30 minutes. The resulting solution, from secondary boiling, was added to a glass container. For staining, the resulting solution was poured into an enamel container, 200 mil cabbage brine was added there. and brought to a boil, put cotton cloth, linen cloth, woolen threads into the solution and boiled for 45 minutes.

Then they turned off and allowed to cool. We got out dyed fabric and woolen thread. The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

The threads of wool were dyed brown, cotton and linen were dyed pale, pale brown.We have found that wool threads are dyed better than fabrics.

4.Cinnamon dyeing of fabric and woolen threads

Materials: cinnamon, glass bowl, enamel bowl, wooden spatula, white woolen thread, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with cinnamon.

Assumption: It is possible that the fabric and wool will turn brown.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling it in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water, 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

We took 2 tablespoons of cinnamon and put it in an enamel container and poured 0.4 liters of filtered, boiled water into it.Stirred with water and put on fire and brought to a boil. As soon as the solution has boiled, put the cloth and wool threads in it and boil for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, remove the fabric and woolen threads from the solution. Rinse under cold water and dry in daylight.

After drying, the dyed fabric and woolen threads were dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed brown. The staining of all samples was not uniform. Woolen threads are dyed more intensely, cotton fabric dyed less, but also has a pronounced brown color, linen fabric is less prone to staining.

Green coloring.

5. Dyeing of fabric and woolen threads with bird cherry bark.

Materials: bird cherry bark, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, white woolen threads, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric and wool using bird cherry bark.

Assumption: maybe the fabric and wool will turn green.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling it in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water, 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

We removed the inner layer of bird cherry bark from the trunk of the bird cherry and soaked it in a glass container for 16 hours. After 16 hours, we transferred the soaked bark and colored water to an enamel bowl (volume 2 liters) and put it on gas.The substance was brought to a boil, and then “simmered” over low heat for 2 hours minutes. A dull brown solution was obtained. The substance was filtered through cheesecloth into a glass container, the rest of the bark was put back in an enamel container, filled with water and boiled for 30 minutes. The resulting solution, from secondary boiling, was added to a glass container. For staining, the resulting solution was poured into an enamel container, brought to a boil, cotton cloth, linen cloth, woolen threads were put into the solution and boiled for 45 minutes.Then they turned off and allowed to cool. We got out dyed fabric and woolen thread. The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed gray. The staining of all samples was not uniform. Woolen threads dyed more intensely in gray, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed pale gray.Thus, the assumed green color was not achieved in the course of the experiment.

Painted in gray.

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with walnut peel.

Materials: walnut shell, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, white woolen thread, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with walnut shells in gray.

Assumption: It is possible that the fabric and wool will turn gray.


We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling it in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water, 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

Chopped the walnuts, separated the shell and kernel from each other.

Soaked in a glass container for 24 hours. After 24 hours, we put the wet shell and colored water into an enamel bowl (volume 2 liters) and put it on gas. The substance was brought to a boil, and then “simmered” over low heat for 2 hours minutes. A dull brown solution was obtained.The substance was filtered through cheesecloth into a glass container, the rest of the shell was put back in an enamel container, poured over with water and boiled for 30 minutes. The resulting solution, from secondary boiling, was added to a glass container.

For staining, the resulting solution was poured into an enamel container, brought to a boil, cotton cloth, linen cloth, woolen threads were put into the solution and boiled for 45 minutes.Then they turned off and allowed to cool. We got out dyed fabric and woolen thread. The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.

Received result:

woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed light brown. The staining of all samples was not uniform. Woolen threads dyed more intensively in gray, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed pale brown.Thus, the supposed gray was not achieved in the course of the experiment.

Coloring in red or pink.

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with beets.

Materials: beetroot 2 pcs (300g.), Glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, white woolen threads, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with beets pink or red.

Assumption: maybe the fabric and wool will turn red or pink.

Experiment: The staining of the samples was carried out in two ways.

Method 1 – in this case, the fabric is treated with vinegar solution for an hour to fix the dyes on the fabric.

Method 2 – in this case, the fabric is treated with vinegar solution after staining the fabric to fix the dye.

1 way.

1. Prepared the fabric for dyeing with vegetables for this we used a vinegar solution: four parts of water were added to one part of vinegar, put the cloth in the solution and boiled for about an hour over low heat.After boiling, the cloth was taken out and rinsed in cold water.

2. Fruits of the beet were peeled and finely chopped, placed in an enamel container.

Filled with filtered water, a volume equal to the cut material. Put on low heat and brought to a boil. They put it to cool and let the beets give off the coloring matter for 12 hours.

After 12 hours, the mixture was filtered, the coloring solution was poured into a glass container.

Cotton and linen cloth, woolen threads were immersed in the solution for 45 minutes. After some time, they took out the fabric, it turned bright pink. The samples were dried.


woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed bright pink. The staining of all samples was not uniform.Woolen threads dyed less intensely, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed bright pink.

  1. method.

  1. Fabric and woolen threads were prepared by simply dampening them with filtered water.

2. Fruits of the beet were peeled and finely chopped, placed in an enamel container and filled with filtered water, equal in volume to the chopped material.Put on low heat and brought to a boil. They put it to cool and let the beets give off the coloring matter for 12 hours. After 12 hours, the mixture was filtered, the coloring solution was poured into a glass container. Cotton and linen cloth, woolen threads were immersed in the solution for 45 minutes. After some time, they took out the fabric, it turned bright pink. The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.


woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed bright pink.The staining of all samples was not uniform. Woolen threads dyed less intensely, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed bright pink. When dyed threads and fabrics were immersed in water with vinegar for a short time, the dyed samples became significantly lighter, the dyes began to wash off.

Staining blue.

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with sage leaves.

Materials: 100g. sage, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, white woolen thread, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric, wool with sage leaves blue.

Assumption: It is possible that the fabric and wool will turn blue.

Experience: We prepared the fabric for dyeing by boiling in a solution for 1 hour (1 liter of water 2-3 g of washing soda and a few pieces of about 5 g of laundry soap).

First, we soaked the crushed leaves in a glass container for 12 hours. After 12 hours, we put the wet sage leaves and colored water into an enamel bowl (volume 2 liters) and put it on gas. The substance was brought to a boil, and then “simmered” over low heat for 1 hour.A dark green solution was obtained. The substance was filtered through cheesecloth into a glass container, the rest of the herb was again put into an enamel container, poured over with water and boiled for 30 minutes. The resulting solution, from secondary boiling, was added to a glass container. For staining, the resulting solution was poured into an enamel container, 300 ml of mordant was added there. (mordant made with iron nails) was brought to a boil, cotton cloth, linen cloth, woolen threads were put in the solution and boiled for 45 minutes.Then they turned off and allowed to cool. We got out dyed fabric and woolen thread. The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.


woolen threads dyed dark green, cotton fabric, linen dyed blue-green. The staining of all samples was uniform.Woolen threads dyed more intensely, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed less brightly.

We repeated the experiment with the addition of a smaller amount of mordant, the woolen threads dyed a pale blue color, and cotton fabric, linen cloth, a dirty blue color.

Violet staining.

  1. Dyeing fabric and woolen threads with red cabbage.

Materials: forks of red cabbage, glass container, enamel container, wooden spatula, white woolen thread, white cotton cloth, white linen cloth, vinegar 70%.

Task: To dye fabric and wool with red cabbage in purple.

Assumption: maybe the fabric and wool will turn purple.

Experiment: 1. Prepared the fabric for dyeing with vegetables for this, a vinegar solution was used: four parts of water were added to one part of vinegar, put the cloth in the solution and boiled for about an hour over low heat. After boiling, the cloth was taken out and rinsed in cold water.

We took a fork of red cabbage and chopped it into small pieces, placed an enamel container and filled it with filtered water equal in volume to the chopped material.Put on low heat and brought to a boil. They put it to cool and let the cabbage give away the coloring matter for 12 hours.

After 12 hours, the mixture was filtered, the coloring solution was poured into a glass container. Cotton and linen cloth, woolen threads were immersed in the solution for 45 minutes.

After some time, they took out the fabric and wool, it turned purple.The samples were dried and then dipped in water with vinegar to consolidate the result.


woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed purple. The staining of all samples was uniform. Woolen threads, cotton fabric, linen fabric dyed intensely in a bright purple color.


  1. During the experiments, vegetable dyes were obtained in the form of a decoction from natural raw materials: oak bark, bird cherry bark, crushed tansy flowers, walnut shells, beets, turmeric, cinnamon, sage leaves, red cabbage.

  2. Using the dyes obtained, the original samples were colored in different colors:

a) in the course of the experiments, woolen threads were dyed evenly and in brighter colors.

b) cotton fabric is dyed worse, the colors are less bright and the fabric is dyed unevenly.

c) samples of linen fabric were the worst of all to dye, they did not acquire bright colors and were stained unevenly. I assumed that the linen fabric is not 100% linen, most likely there are impurities of artificial threads in the fabric.

3. After staining the samples with natural dyes, we washed the samples with baby soap, the dyes obtained from oak bark and sage leaves turned out to be the most persistent, then dyes from bird cherry bark, walnut shells, turmeric, sage turned out to be the most persistent. from vegetables (cabbage and beets ).In general, after washing the samples, we concluded that natural dyes do not persist, all samples have significantly lost their original color after washing.

4. To fix the color, we used 4 methods: we boiled the samples in vinegar for 1 hour before staining, fixed with a vinegar solution after staining, added sauerkraut mordant and rust solution during staining. After carrying out the experiments, we concluded that the most effective fixes the color of the rust stain (the samples stained with sage leaves with rust stain practically did not shed), then sauerkraut juice (the samples stained with tansy with sauerkraut juice shed significantly, but retained enough color). Color fixing with vinegar is least effective. (samples painted with beets and fixed with vinegar practically did not retain their color)

5. Since in the course of experiments we have established that dyes are not permanent, it is not practical to dye fabric for making clothes.

Fabrics dyed with natural dyes are suitable for needlework and doll making. In addition, many needlewomen (cross stitching) use natural dyes to dye the canvas in different colors when they want to give a background to their paintings.

List of used literature

1. Medicinal plants. Encyclopedia. – Minsk: Book House, 2005

2. Meadow herbaceous plants. Biology and protection: Handbook / Gubanov I.A. et al. -M .: Agropromizdat, 1990

3. Melnikov BN, IB Blincheva “Theoretical foundations of technology for dyeing fibrous materials”. M.: Chemistry, 1978

four.Raimkulova Yu.D., Semenetsky M.I. Vegetable dyes. The technology of dyeing fabrics in the period from the IX-XI centuries. on the territory of the Sambia Peninsula; http: //

5. Semenova M. We are Slavs! Popular encyclopedia. – SPb .: Publishing house “Azbuka – classic”, 2007

6. Sergeev Vasily. Weaving from straw – from grandfather Vasily;

7. Solovyov Yu.I. “General History of Chemistry”.M.: Science, 1980

8. Chemistry and Life (Salter Chemistry, Part II) / ed. Tarasova N.P. – M .: RKhTU im. D.I. Mendeleeva, 1997

9. Internet resources:

10.http: // Chemical encyclopedia

11.http: // Great Soviet Encyclopedia

12.http: //

Job views: 23769

90,000 Natural dyes of the Middle Ages | Gold embroidery workshop “Ubrus”

Found my materials for a report at a scientific-practical conference on natural dyes in archeology.Articles have a certain specific focus.

I will publish them on the sly, here is the first one.

This is so to say “the basics”, without the practice of dyeing yet. There should be pictures for them.

Natural dyes of the Middle Ages:



(from Lat. purpura – purple, Greek Πορφύρα).

Obtained from the body of needle shellfish – Murex brandaris L . ( Bolinus brandaria ), Hexaplex trunculus and Thais haemastoma , Nucella Nucella – Mexico.

Color: Depending on the type of mollusks and dyeing technology, fabrics received dyes of various colors and shades: fiery red, red, crimson, violet, purple shades.

Color Brightness: Very Vivid.

Durability: unmatched.

Cost in the Middle Ages: the highest.

Accessibility in the Middle Ages: extremely limited use. Wore to know. Sometimes – only persons of royal blood, or only the emperor.

Mordants: Most often not required.

Labor intensity: high. To dye 1 kg of wool, 10,000 shellfish are needed.

From what period it is known: southern countries – antiquity. Northern Europe – 8th c.e.

Distribution: Mediterranean Sea, Atlantic Ocean.

Usage: extremely popular, mass production, industrial scale.

Modern use: not used.

Fabrics: wool, silk.

Dye: 6,6′-dibromindigo purple and indigotine blue.


(Kermès), or oak bug (Coccus ilicis) is an insect of the vermiform family, living on a special species of oak ( Ilex or Quercus coccifera ), which grows in southern Europe.

Color: bright red, scarlet, crimson, pink.

Color Brightness: Vivid, saturated colors.

Mordants: required.

Durability: the highest

Cost in the Middle Ages: very high.

Accessibility in the Middle Ages: used by nobility and wealthy citizens.

Labor intensity: average.

From what period it is known: southern countries – antiquity. Northern Europe – Bronze Age.

Usage: very wide, manufactory.

Fabrics: silk, wool, cotton.

Modern use: South of Europe, Turkey, Caucasus – ethnographic clothing.

Distribution: Spain, southern France, Italy, the islands of the Archipelago (Candia) and many other areas of Europe with a warm climate.

Color: Carminic acid.

Kermes contains 12 times less dye than cochineal.


Cochineal (eng.)

( Coccus cacti ) – an insect from this. scale insects ( Coccidae ), found in one of the cacti – nopala ( Opuntia coccinellifera ).

Color: bright red, scarlet, crimson, lilac, violet, pink.

Brightness: Bright, saturated colors.

Durability: high, but lower than that of kermes.

Cost in the Middle Ages: high.

Labor intensity: high.

From what period it is known: In Europe since the 16th century, imported from America.

Distribution: Mexico, Chile.

Fabrics: Silk, wool, cotton.

Mordants: required.

Color: Carminic acid .

Full analogue of kermes .

Application – widespread, manufactory.

Modern application – very wide. Food coloring, dye for soap and cosmetics, paint for artists.


madder ( eng .), crapp.

Madder dye (lat. Rubia tinctórum ) is a perennial herb of the Madder family ( Rubiaceae ) with a ligneous horizontal rhizome. The dye is obtained from the rhizomes of the plant. Medicinal plant.

(The name madder comes from the Proto-Slavic word marati – “to stain”, “paint”) .

Color: red, brick, ocher, raspberry, orange.

Color brightness: On silk – bright, on wool – rich, medium brightness, on linen – dim, pastel.

Durability: medium.

Fixers, mordants: needed.

Cost in the Middle Ages: in countries where madder does not grow, it is high.

Accessibility in the Middle Ages: the wealthy and the middle class could use it. In the Scandinavian countries – used to know.

Labor intensity: average. For long-lasting color on wool and linen, multiple tempering is required.

From what period it is known: In Southern Europe – antiquity, in Northern Europe – bronze.

Distribution: Mediterranean, Asia Minor, southern Europe, Ukraine, southern Russia, Caucasus.

Application – widespread, manufacturing, industrial.

Modern use: Central Asia, India – dye. Europe is a medicinal plant.

Fabrics: silk, wool, linen.

Dye: Alizarin (1,2-dihydroxyanthraquinone).

Breeder (lat. Gálium ) is a genus of annual, biennial and perennial herbaceous plants of the Madder family, distributed all over the world.

The Russian name of the genus, “bedstraw”, is explained by the similarity of this plant to madder ( Rubia ). An analogue of madder, but gives a more unstable and faded color.

Available to everyone, not used in manufacturing.

Dye: Alizarin .

Alkanna dyeing (alkanetroot – eng .)

(lat. Alkanna tinctoria ) is a plant of the Borage family, a species of the genus Alcanna, growing in the Mediterranean and cultivated in southern France, North-East Africa, Asia Minor and some other places.Local distribution, medium-resistant dye. Used in the Middle Ages. Rhizomes are taken for dyeing.

Alcanine is a red fat-soluble food coloring. Used in paints for painting.

Dyes, which are widespread in the plant world, are:

Anthocyanins (from the Greek νθος – flower and κυανός – blue, azure) – colored plant glycosides containing as aglycone anthocyanidins – substituted 2-phenylchromenes, belong to flavonoids.

Contains: red and blue flowers, red and blue berries, red leaves. They were widely used as dyes in ethnography. Unstable, of little value.

All methods suggesting coloring with cornflowers, blueberries, etc. with berries and flowers are based on the use of anthocyanins.

Color: Depending on the acidity of the medium, from bright crimson to blue-blue.

Brightness of color: bright to pale.

Durability: very unstable

Cost in the Middle Ages: low.

Accessibility in the Middle Ages: could be used by the poor and peasants.

Mordants: required.

From what period it is known: ethnography.

Distribution: ubiquitous.

Use: Extremely popular, local use, never on an industrial scale.

Modern use: not used.

Fabrics: wool, silk, linen, cotton.

Being pyrillic salts, anthocyanins are readily soluble in water and polar solvents, slightly soluble in alcohol and insoluble in non-polar solvents.

The group of anthocyanins is the most numerous, there are about 10 species. It includes pionidin, pelargonidin and malvidin, which give purple and pink colors, and cyanidin and delphinidin that stain blue, and petunidin, a colorless pigment.

Paints and dyes for fabrics, indelible and with your own hands

Humanity has been dyeing fabrics for a long time. The simplest way was to leave the material overnight in a vat with boiled leaves or rhizomes of various plants.The resulting dirty yellows and browns were called the colors of the poor because of their availability.

Rich and noble people preferred bright colors in their dresses and interiors. Thus, the rare purple was widely considered the prerogative of the royal dynasties.

Field of application

Dyeing of fabrics is used in various industries:

  • Furniture industry. Unique upholstery of a sofa or chairs is often a source of pride for the owners.
  • In the fashion industry. Every year, fashion designers show us the fashionable colors of the new season from the catwalks.
  • Creation of interior items. Various panels, tablecloths, paintings, curtains bring their zest to the design of the room.

At home, often faded or shabby things are given new life with the help of paints. Needlewomen use various pigments for painting decorative napkins and clothing accessories.

Types of dyes

Gone are the days when the right hand was cut off in Iran for the import of artificial dyes.Now, even in their homeland, indigo plants are actively synthesizing blue pigment for coloring denim.

According to their composition, it is customary to divide dyes into:

  • Acrylic
  • Aniline
  • Stamp
  • Plastisol
  • Natural

The choice of a particular paint depends on the purpose of use and the composition of the material. For uniform dyeing, natural and aniline dyes are best suited, and for painting on fabrics, luminous and acrylic dyes are best.

Acrylic colors

The most popular for silk, woolen and cotton fabrics today are acrylic dyes. They are convenient to apply both small point images and create whole masterpieces. Spectacular panels, small napkins or original blouses can become your pride.

The technique of painting with acrylic paints is identical to painting with watercolors or gouache. Draw on the fabric with a pencil or marker, and then use a natural bristle brush.In order not to go beyond the boundaries of the picture, use a colorless outline.

Water-based acrylic paints are used for drawing on fabric. They are odorless and can be easily diluted with water. Once completely dry, they become water-resistant and indelible from the fabric. True, in order to avoid the appearance of stains, it is recommended to wash such things by hand, at a water temperature not higher than 40 degrees.

Acrylic dyes are produced in the following types:

  • In tubes. Most economical form factor. Allows you to keep the freshness of the paint for a long time.
  • Cans. Spray paint is used to paint large areas of fabric. It should be noted that the material itself acquires rigidity and ceases to stretch.
  • Spray. Unlike aerosol, the colorant is sprayed on by droplets. It is not explosive as there is no pressure inside.

The best manufacturers of acrylic paints:

  • Simplicol
  • Decola
  • Marabu
  • Dylon

Aniline paints

This type of powder or produced liquids.Suitable for monochrome dyeing of natural fabrics.

As a rule, synthetic fabrics or mixed fabrics, containing more than 60% artificial threads, are difficult to dye.

The standard sequence for working with these paints is as follows:

  1. The pigment is dissolved in a large volume of liquid. The proportion is 1:30 or 1:40 in relation to the weight of the fabric to be dyed. So, for a T-shirt weighing 100 grams. use 3-4 liters of coloring liquid.
  2. The fabric is immersed in the composition and boiled at a temperature of 95 degrees. The longer the process, the darker the color will be.
  3. At the end of cooking, add 2-5 tbsp. l. salt to fix the paint.
  4. If you are dyeing wool, add a couple more tablespoons of vinegar to the water. If cotton cloth – then soda.
  5. Don’t forget to rinse the item after painting. The fabric may shed for the next 3-4 washes, so wash it separately from light and easily soiled items.

The above painting is reminiscent of the batik style.Aniline dyes can also achieve other effects on fabric:

  • Gradient. The fabric is gradually dipped into the dye vat at regular intervals. Then the area of ​​the material that is on the coloring for half an hour will be darker than the one that has been in the liquid for only 10 minutes.
  • Divorces. In the 90s, jeans were dyed in this way at home. The fabric is twisted, as if they wanted to squeeze, and tied with a rope. In this form, the material is cooked.
  • Knot. Small buttons or coins are covered with a cloth and wrapped around with thread. After coloring, characteristic traces in the form of rays remain on the material.

Stamp inks

Stamp inks are used in the hotel business and laundries to mark bed linen, towels and other fabric consumables. Their chemical composition is diverse:

  • Alcohol-based. Dries quickly. Withstands bleach and boiling.
  • Water-glycerin based. Absorbs quickly, does not stain hands. Withstands temperatures up to 70 degrees. A commonly used color is black.
  • Oil based. Permanent paint. Dries slowly after application.
  • Colorless. Invisible under normal lighting conditions. They manifest themselves under the influence of ultraviolet radiation. Used for hidden marking.

Plastisol paints

Luminous designs on clothing and sneakers are common among people hanging out in clubs.

Unique images are applied with special fluorescent paints based on plastisol.

The following types are available for sale:

  • Glow in the dark and under UV radiation.
  • Glowing only when exposed to UV radiation.

Also distinguish between visible and invisible colors. The latter in daylight have a white color, and in the dark they glow in blue, yellow, green or another color.

Natural colors

The list of natural colors is very wide:

  • Onion peel
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Vegetable, berry and fruit juices
  • Nettle leaves
  • Turmeric
  • Leaves
  • Orange or lemon rind
  • Tansy
  • Oak bark
  • Spruce cones
  • Etc.p.

The main advantage of such coloring is its environmental friendliness. If you suffer from any kind of allergies, you should not risk using synthetic dyes. Take advantage of natural pigments to transform your clothes.

The dyeing technology is very similar to working with aniline dyes. Just do not bring the water to a boil. It is enough to simmer the tissue in an infusion at 50-60 degrees.

The penultimate stage is the fixing of the pigment.It is carried out using a 1% solution of the following mordants:

  • Ammonium iron alum
  • Potassium dichromate
  • Copper sulphate
  • Potassium alum
  • Tin dichloride

In the prepared solution, let the material be rinsed off for about 25 minutes. vinegar.

How and how to dye fabric at home without chemicals?

By Ekaterina Read 7 min. Published by

Favorite curtains have burned out, become faded – and you want to update their color at home. How to dye the fabric? There are many options, you just need to choose the right method. If you master this procedure, your clothes will always look new and fresh. Not every housewife will look at the label on jeans or a T-shirt before washing. A new item, which can only be washed by hand in warm water, flies into the washing machine and loses its appearance. Take your time to take good clothes to the dacha – if the structure of the fabric is not broken, the color can be restored.

How to choose chemical dyes?

You can buy ordinary white T-shirts in the store, paint them in different ways and make a unique kit that others will take for design work. It is better for an inexperienced hostess not to take on difficult tasks: painting jackets, synthetic fabrics. Entrust this task to the experts in dry cleaning, and start learning with the ABC book yourself: change the color of your white cotton T-shirt. Colored things are more difficult to paint, it is better not to change their color, but simply to make it richer and brighter.

In the store you can find dyes of any shade. When buying a chemical, see what it can be used for. You can treat the curtains with any substance, and if you want to dye your clothes or bedding, the composition should not contain compounds harmful to the skin. If there is no label or label on the item, you can determine the composition of the fabric yourself. If you set fire to linen or cotton thread, it will burn with the smell of burnt paper. Burnt natural wool smells like burnt horn; a ball of combustion products appears at the end of the synthetic thread.

When choosing a dye shade, the original color of the fabric must be taken into account. If you submerge a yellow T-shirt in blue pigment, don’t be surprised if the result is a greenish tint. It is almost impossible to repaint a dark garment in light colors; you will have to use a very aggressive bleach that can destroy the structure of the fabric. It is better to dye faded dark clothes black, the pigment will return brightness and freshness to things.

Experts believe that any shade can be obtained using only 3 dyes: blue, yellow and red.Experiment and you can get a full range of colors by combining these three colors.

The most common colors can be obtained as follows:

  • yellow and blue will give green;
  • red and yellow turn to orange;
  • red and blue will give a purple hue.

There is paint in the kitchen: what are the natural pigments?

It is better not to use harsh chemicals at home, but to use natural dyes.Everyone knows that eggs for Easter need to be boiled in onion skins, which give the shells a very beautiful and bright red-brown color. In the same way, you can dye fabric, food, paper. There are a lot of natural dyes. You just need to learn how to use them correctly.

  • Onion peel, coffee, tea, cinnamon, henna give brown color.
  • Spinach, juniper berries, elderberry leaves will be dyed green.
  • Beets and wolfberries will turn things red.
  • Blue shades are obtained with the use of sage, ivan-da-marya flowers.
  • For yellow, use carrots, citrus zest, birch bark.

Natural dyes do not damage fibers. They do not give such an intense color as chemistry, but they are safe for health. Please note that each substance requires a different approach. If chemical dyes of the same composition can be mixed with each other, choosing the desired color, then tea with berry juice or a decoction of the bark may be incompatible.Remember that natural dyes are weaker than chemicals. If you want to pre-discolor the fabric, add a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide and ammonia to a liter of water, heat to a temperature that your hand can tolerate, and hold the fabric in the solution for several hours, stirring occasionally. Then rinse well. After such processing, after painting, a cleaner and brighter color will be obtained.

Materials made from natural fibers can be dyed with natural pigments. It is better not to tackle synthetics for a novice hostess – such things are treated with special preparations, for them there are special methods of dyeing fabrics.If you need to update the color of your acetate silk fabric or synthetic jacket, use a dry cleaning service. Once you get some experience with simple fabrics, dyeing any material will become easy and familiar for you.

Preparatory operations

When using chemical dyes, be sure to read the instructions for them. Each manufacturer can make their own recommendations for the coloring process, but there are general requirements for both chemical and natural preparations.Items should be washed thoroughly, free from dirt and stains. If the dirt cannot be washed off, use a stain remover and then rinse the product well. Sometimes fruit and vegetable juices leave traces that cannot be removed. There is only one way out – paint the thing in a color several shades darker than the stain. Boil the starched laundry in a solution of soap and soda, then rinse. Peel off all decorative metal and plastic elements, they may lose their appearance when painted.

Sometimes things are planned to be altered after painting.In this case, all the seams must be ripped open in advance so that they are evenly saturated with pigment. If you decide to dye a lined jacket or raincoat, be sure to open the bottom seam. Air bubbles trapped between the lining and the base material will prevent the dye from spreading evenly onto the fabric.

Prepare all necessary equipment in advance. First, find a tank in which the fabric will be completely submerged in water and lie free. It is advisable to take an enamel container.You can use a galvanized or aluminum container if it is well descaled. Prepare two smooth wooden sticks with which you will stir and turn the product. Do not forget to buy rubber gloves, otherwise your hands will be painted in the most fantastic color for several days and you will have to hide them from others.

Now you need to prepare the liquid. It is advisable to use soft melt or rainwater. If you only have hard water, add a tablespoon of baking soda to the bucket of liquid.Dilute powder colorants first in a small container so that no grains remain. Strain the solution and pour into a spray tank.

Painting products

Place the container on the stove, immerse the product in the dye and heat, stirring continuously. Boil your laundry until it is darker than desired. The clothes will become lighter after drying. If using natural dyes, first soak the items in the fixative solution. If using berry juice, mix half a glass of salt in 2 liters of water.For the vegetable broth, pour 1 part vinegar into 4 parts water. Dip the fabric into the compound and place in the dye tub. When painting, do not immerse the entire product in the composition; first, experiment on a small piece of fabric.


If you want to dye the fabric not evenly, but with streaks, wring out the product, fix it in a twisted state and hold it in the dye composition.

After staining, rinse the fabric well. Change the water several times until the liquid is completely clear.When dyeing wool or silk, add a little vinegar to the rinse water. Dry in the shade at room temperature. It is very important that the product hangs evenly, without folds. Straighten it gently on a string or hang it on a hanger. Remember that things will shed heavily after the procedure. Perform the first few washings by hand separately from other laundry.

You can also dye the yarn from which you are going to knit a sweater or scarf with natural pigments. Collect the thread in a skein and tie it tightly in several places so that it does not get tangled while stirring.Dry the skeins in a suspended state, fasten a small weight from below.


If the dyeing experiment is unsuccessful, the colors are stained, dilute the black paint and immerse the item in the solution. This pigment will lay down evenly and cover all blemishes.

Sometimes a smooth, even dyeing of the fabric is not required. You can make fabric with streaks, and use a brush, tea leaves to create stains. If you glue some areas with plaster, electrical tape or figures cut out of thick paper, you can get fabric with an interesting ornament from dark and light areas.To create small bright fragments, painting with oil paints is suitable.

Skillful housewives do not throw away old things until they are completely worn out. Faded, faded, yellowed things can be turned into new ones if they are painted correctly. Store-bought pigments come with instructions; when working with plant materials, you will have to rely on your intuition. Do not grab an expensive item right away; for a first experience, try freshening up old jeans and a T-shirt. Perhaps such clothes are not suitable for the city, but for work in the garden it will be just right.Collect all your old shirts, leotards, shorts and start experimenting. Until you master the painting process well, you will have time to be known as the first fashionista of the summer cottage village.

How to dye a garment or wool for felting with natural dyes and fabric dyes at home?

The natural color of most fabrics is rather unremarkable – gray, beige, yellowish. Since ancient times, weavers have dyed fabrics in various colors using natural plant and mineral dyes.

Most often we buy already dyed fabric. However, the canvas can be painted independently at home in the same way as our ancestors did. How to achieve bright colors and dye a shirt, T-shirt or bedding?

What determines the choice of dye and the method of dyeing the fabric?

Several factors influence the choice of dye and the method of dyeing the fabric. First of all, you should focus on the skill of the master. It is best for beginner needlewomen to try their hand at white T-shirts and T-shirts, and more experienced ones can take on hoodies, jackets with padding polyester, complex, textured fabrics.

The paint should be selected based on the following parameters:

  • clothing material – synthetic or natural;
  • The original color of the garment is white, dark or colored;
  • fabric texture – smooth or pile;
  • The end result is to paint over the whole piece or paint over only a part.

What natural dyes are there and how to work with them?

Do-it-yourself fabric can be dyed using natural plant dyes.Many herbs, vegetables, berries and fruits that we are used to seeing on our table can be useful for coloring things. Dyeing includes 2 stages: etching, which fixes the dye to the fabric, and dyeing itself.

The table shows the names of the etch depending on the dye:

Natural dyes 510510510 Alum
, cherry berries, oregano, yarrow 105 905 905
Potassium dichromate Subsequent birch, aspen, apple leaves, oregano, yarrow
Preliminary Apple and birch leaves, spruce cones, sorrel
Simultaneous Ivan da Marya
Subsequent Wormwood
Simultaneous alder cones, spruce needles, apple leaves
Subsequent pomegranate peel
Simultaneous aspen leaves, cornflower
Subsequent alder cones, potato tops
Without etching bird cherry, oregano, ivan tea, ivan da maria.
Natural food colors

How to get brown or yellow color?

In what ways is it possible to dye a cotton T-shirt brown? The most common dye is onion peel. It is boiled in water until it acquires a rich shade, and then the product is boiled in it. The tone turns out to be bright, brick or reddish brown.

Dyeing things with onion skins

In addition to onion skins, different shades are obtained using the following natural dyes:

  • tobacco;
  • black tea;
  • oak bark;
  • henna;
  • cinnamon;
  • walnut lintels;
  • horse sorrel root.

Beige, yellowish shades are obtained if the item is briefly dipped in a weak solution of tea, henna or oak bark. In addition, these substances will give the effect of antiquity.

How to get yellow and orange colors? To do this, you need to use the juice of orange plants. Turmeric and cumin are dyed to obtain a rich, bright, golden tone. An orange thing can be obtained by painting it with a decoction of celandine or sea buckthorn. A yellow color is given by wormwood, carrots, poplar buds, orange juice or its zest, birch leaves.

Dyeing fabric with turmeric

To make a dyeing solution, for example, from birch leaves, you can use the following recipe:

  1. Dissolve 5 g of dry alum in 2 liters of water;
  2. Boil the thing in solution for 30 minutes;
  3. Boil 0.5 kg of birch leaves in 4 liters of water for an hour;
  4. Strain the broth and boil the fabric in it for 1 hour;
  5. Rinse the garment thoroughly 3-4 times, adding a few drops of vinegar to fix the new tone.

All shades of red

Pink, scarlet, burgundy, crimson – how to achieve these shades at home? Shades of red of different saturation can be obtained with the help of elderberries, wolf berries, beets, oregano, St. John’s wort, poppy. A pale pink tone is obtained if the vegetable broth is diluted with water and a light thing is immersed in it for a short time. Saturated, dark shades are obtained by prolonged boiling in a decoction of beets or elderberries.

Blue and green

Natural dye red cabbage

All shades of blue are obtained by applying a decoction of red cabbage, blackberry, quinoa seed, ivan da Marya inflorescences.These natural dyes give beautiful tones ranging from pale blue to deep blue and violet. A heavenly, turquoise tone is given by cornflower flowers.

Green color is obtained by staining with spinach juice, decoction of elderberry leaves, juniper berries. An indigo shade is achieved by mixing turmeric and fresh spinach juice. The golden seasoning and herbal tea combine to create a beautiful, deep tone.

Black and gray

Can fabrics be dyed black and gray at home? These tones are unusual in that they are difficult to obtain with food coloring, but there are several substances that can help dye a jacket and other garments these colors.

Black is obtained using instant or brewed coffee. The stronger the drink, the darker the color. Weak coffee gives a brown tone, but if brewed stronger, it will be possible to achieve a persistent blackness.

Dried tobacco

Instead of coffee, you can take tobacco. 15 g of tobacco is diluted in 1 liter of water, boiled, and then the product is dipped there. The longer you keep the fabric in the decoction, the deeper the tone will be. Maple and young sea buckthorn leaves also give black.

Gray color is obtained with the help of broom, bearberry, rosemary bark, spruce cones, burdock root.You can use sea buckthorn berries by etching the fabric with copper sulfate.

Special dyes for fabrics

In addition to natural dyes, you can use chemical dyes that are sold in hardware stores. They are intended for home staining and are accompanied by detailed instructions for use. The shops offer a wide range of paints in a wide range of colors.

Form of production of artificial colors:

  • crystals;
  • powder;
  • paste;
  • aerosol.

Paint types:

  • Acrylic. Suitable for drawing patterns on fabric. Can be used for dyeing cotton, wool, silk. Contains acrylic and water-based coloring pigments, safe to use.
  • Aniline. They are used only for natural fabrics, synthetics are not taken. They are used when using the batik or gradient technique, when the fabric is gradually dipped in liquid so that the underside is colored more strongly than the top.
  • Stamp. They are used for affixing stamps, logos. There are alcohol, water-glycerin, oil.
  • Plastisol. Reflective or fluorescent paints. They are invisible in daylight, but under the influence of ultraviolet radiation they begin to glow.

Nuances of dyeing velor and knitwear

Covers, shoes are usually sewn from velor material, it is used as upholstery for furniture. The peculiarity of velor is that it is a pile fabric.It is not so easy to paint over it, because it is necessary that all the villi be evenly colored. In the store, you should buy paint specifically designed for velor or suede. Typically, a brush is included to help distribute the dye evenly.

Natural dyes will not work for dyeing knitted sweaters or dresses. In the hardware store, you should purchase a special paint that is specifically designed for knitwear. It is diluted in water according to the instructions, and then the thing is placed in the container.It is important to periodically turn the product over so that it is painted over evenly. After that, the garment is rinsed several times in cool water and the first time is washed separately from other clothes, because it will fade.

Is there a difference in working with silk, synthetics, cotton and woolen fabrics?

How to dye different types of fabrics correctly? Recommendations for working with different materials:

  • Cotton and linen quickly lose their color. This must be taken into account when self-painting and initially achieve a shade slightly darker and brighter than required.Hard water will not work; you can use bottled water or soften it with soda ash.
  • Natural vegetable dyes do not take synthetics, you should buy a textile paint designed specifically for synthetic materials. Before pouring the powder into the water, add an 85% formic acid solution in a ratio of 20 g per 10 liters. The temperature of the solution should not exceed 40–45 degrees, otherwise the paint will not fix.
  • Aniline dye is best for wool.Woolen sweaters and dresses, yarn are boiled in a dyeing solution for half an hour, and then a third of a glass of vinegar is added to fix the color.
  • As with wool, vinegar, lemon juice or ammonia should be added to set the color on silk. Silk is often dyed using the batik technique, for this special dyes are used, for example “Batik-hobby”, “Javana Batik”.

How to dye wool for hand felting?

A variety of products are obtained from felting wool: shoes, dolls, decor items, handbags, hats.How to paint it yourself? The plant component or artificial color is added to a container with water, put on fire and brought to a boil. The woolen mass is dipped in boiling water, the heat is reduced to a minimum and left over low heat for 1.5-2 hours.

When the wool has acquired the required shade, it is taken out and left to cool. The cold mass is washed several times under running cool water. A little etching is added to fix the color. The fibers are dried in a well-ventilated area or outdoors, away from direct sunlight.After that, they are carefully combed – and the wool is ready for felting.

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Properties and principles of mixing paints

Most of the designers dealing with various interior décor, in their work, are regularly faced with the absence of most of the shades in the standard palette. If the manufacturer does not have the desired paint, then, having three basic colors available, you can get any shades that exist in nature.Let’s find out how to get orange color by mixing different colors.

Orange properties

In interiors, this color is very often used for painting children’s rooms. Cafes and other establishments for young people will look good in orange. For living quarters, designers recommend using this shade carefully – you don’t need a lot of it. If bright orange colors prevail in garments, then this indicates that the person has an active life position and is cheerful.

Experts are confident that using orange paint, you can subordinate individuals to social influences. Therefore, this shade is actively used for interior decoration of religious organizations.

Preparatory phase

Before mixing paints, prepare a suitable surface, for artists this is a palette, for interior designers – a container. Prepare red and yellow paint, brushes. To get the perfect result, you need to make sure that there are no foreign particles (dust, various hairs) on the working surface.

It is important to define and decide which mixing method to use in order to get the result. If the mixing process is carried out on paper, then the total can be obtained by overlapping the previous tones. If dyes are mixed in jars or on a palette, a new tone is created.

We connect colors on paper or wall

What do you need to create orange? The first step is to decide which colors will be applied to the base first. If red is applied first, and yellow is on top of it, then the result will be darker than if red was on top.It is very important that the brush is as clean as possible. In painting, orange shades are obtained if you apply yellow and red in layers, and then grind.

The shade of orange will completely depend on which color was applied last: if yellow, then the final shade will be lighter, if red – more saturated.

In the video: how to get colors when mixing paints.

Mixing on the palette

If it is decided to mix on the palette, then it is much easier.It is necessary to apply a small amount of the first dye to the base, then the same amount of the second. Then the dyes are mixed with a palette knife (this is a small spatula). You can also use an ordinary brush for mixing, but you should make sure in advance that there are no traces of other colors on the tool.

Working with oil and acrylic paints

To obtain orange, yellow and red dyes are applied at close distance to each other. If you move away from the treated wall, you can see the effect of distance.When mixing acrylic paints, be sure to use solvents, this will make the drying process slower.

Feature of oil paints in higher density and depth. Such materials are mixed in one of the above ways. It is allowed to use layer-by-layer mixing: first yellow, then red. One more layer of transparent yellow paint is allowed on top.

When using oil paints in work, experts recommend not to combine more than three colors at the same time.Only professional artists know how to use this trick correctly.

Knowing these principles, the process of obtaining an orange hue will seem quite simple. Now you know how to make compositions of different intensities. This will help aspiring artists and interior designers in their work.

How to get a bright orange color (1 video)

Various versions of orange (38 photos)

How to dye fabric at home

Your favorite thing has faded and lost its attractiveness, or you want to experiment with old jeans and T-shirts? There is a simple solution: you can dye the fabric at home.How to do it? Hardware stores sell special fabric dyes. You can also use products that are always at hand and are inexpensive – fresh vegetables, berries, spices. Read more about dyes and the staining procedure in our article.

Why this procedure is needed

Any thing sooner or later loses its brightness and expressiveness. Often housewives are lazy and do not follow the rules for caring for clothes written on the tags. As a result, the thing, not having time to wear out, becomes dull and lifeless.Store dyes or natural remedies can bring old washed items back to life.

Dyes for fabrics are a way to highlight your individuality. Creative people see them as a great opportunity for experimentation. Having shown imagination, you can make a masterpiece from an ordinary white T-shirt. Nobody will have such clothes. Dyes are an essential attribute in the work of a home seamstress.

What types of fabrics can be dyed

The most pliable in this matter are fabrics made from natural materials: cotton, linen, wool, silk.Mixed textile materials – semi-silk products, semi-wool are well dyed. Polyester is difficult to dye, and the result will not be as impressive. Fibers of such a fabric do not absorb paint well, the color of the product will be dull, and, most likely, it will shed at the very first wash after dyeing.

If a synthetic jacket has faded, then its painting should be entrusted to dry cleaning. There they will select professional dye products that require strict temperature and other conditions.At home, it is easy to deal with cotton T-shirts, towels, dresses and skirts. A popular procedure for dyeing jeans.

How can fabric be dyed

There are dyes in all kinds of colors for different types of fabric in hardware stores. They are powdery, in the form of crystals or paste. However, not everyone will take the risk of using “chemistry”, because you can damage the product, and instead of an exclusive thing you get a rag for cleaning the floor. Natural dyes are successfully used at home.They are safe for tissue and for humans, although not as intense as chemical ones.

Natural fabric dye:

  1. Brown hue is provided by onion peel, oak bark, tea, coffee, cinnamon, henna and basma.
  2. You can make things green with spinach, poplar bark, bird cherry, juniper berries, sorrel, elderberry leaves.
  3. Black can be achieved with natural coffee.
  4. To obtain red, blueberries, elderberries, wolfberry leaves, beets are used.
  5. Blackberries, red cabbage, Ivan da Marya flowers, sage, and quinoa seeds will give blue and blue colors.
  6. Celandine, wild apple bark, turmeric – for orange shades.
  7. Yellow paint: wormwood, carrots, cumin, turmeric, nettle roots, poplar buds, birch leaves and bark, orange peel.

How to choose a dye

The choice of dye determines the material of the product and its color. How to determine the type of textile? Pull one small thread up and down the fabric and light it.Artificial silk, cotton and linen burn well. You will smell burnt paper. Natural silk and wool burn poorly. The woolen thread will smell like a burnt horn, and a sintered ball will form at its end.

The color of the product is important for the choice of dye and its quantity. If white fabric is dyed, then, subject to the conditions, the color of the product will be the same as indicated on the package. When dyeing colored clothes, the result may differ slightly, and sometimes dramatically, from the one presented on the pack.

Colored clothing will always appear darker than white. To paint such a product, it is recommended to choose either the same color or a darker version of it. For example, for blue, use dark blue. It is good to dye colored things black. Black paint covers all colors, but takes on a subtle shade. When repainting bright products in other colors, you can get a dirty and ugly shade.

The purpose of the stain also influences the choice of the stain.To obtain light shades, you can take a natural dye or chemical in small proportions. To get a rich color, you can take risks and exceed the norm. If the item is washed out and faded, it will need less dye to restore color than to dye white items.

Preparatory phase

For the staining procedure you will need:

  • textile product,
  • deep tank,
  • wooden sticks or shovels,
  • water,
  • dye,
  • protective gloves.

Textile preparation

To paint products, they need to be prepared. All clothing must be washed and stained. Old dirt also needs to be removed, as they can stand out against the general background and spoil the appearance of the product. Apply stain remover and remember to remove it from the fabric by washing and ironing. If this is not done, the product will become unevenly colored.

Advice! If the stains cannot be removed in any way, then choose only dark shades for repainting.Light-colored paints do not paint over such stains.

Also remove metal jewelry and buttons from items. They can be damaged and rusty.

The starch layer will have to be removed from new cotton and linen products. To do this, they need to be boiled for 20-25 minutes in a soap and soda solution. Rinse things thoroughly after the procedure. Residual soap and baking soda can interfere with staining.

Rinse wool products in the following solution: 12 liters of water + 2 tbsp.l. ammonia. When dyeing the yarn, it is important to ensure that it does not get tangled. To do this, paint it with separate skeins, tied in several places. For convenience, the skeins can be strung on a piece of thin rope, so they can be easily turned over during the painting process.

Tank and water preparation

Not only textiles are being prepared, but also containers for dyeing. The dishes must be absolutely clean. An enamelled vessel will do. For galvanized and aluminum cookware, there is a rule: remove all traces of scale before the procedure.

The container must be of a suitable size. The fabric should not wrinkle during dyeing. It will absorb color well if it is completely immersed in the dye solution. If the dishes are too small, then there is a risk of uneven staining of things.

Prepare two wooden sticks to flip fabrics while dyeing. They should be smooth without knots. An uneven surface of wood can snag on the fibers and tear. Sticks are taken long and strong so that it is convenient to turn things over and pull them out of the solution.

Water for the procedure must be soft. Ideally, this is melt water or rainwater. Hard water can be softened at home. To do this, add 1 tbsp for 12 liters. baking soda.

Stages of painting

When everything is ready, we proceed to painting the products. Pour the dye into a small bowl following the instructions. Add water gradually, stirring the paint thoroughly to dissolve completely. Now strain the dye solution and pour it into the container in which the product will be dyed.Dilute the paint with water to completely cover the item.

Place the container on the stove. Now you can immerse the product in the dye. To get a uniform color, use a spatula or sticks to rotate the fabric in a circle. You need to take out the product when it acquires a darker color than you wish. When dry, the fabric will brighten. To get stains, the product must be twisted, as during the wringing, and fixed with rubber rings.

Rinse the painted material well in water.After the last rinse, the water should remain clean. The better you rinse the fabric, the less shedding it will be in subsequent washings. Do not dry painted products in the sun or near the stove.

How to paint things with natural dyes

Miss Purity Magazine recommends adhering to the following guidelines when coloring with natural products:

  1. Test the natural product on a small piece of cloth before painting.
  2. Fill the selected raw material with water in a ratio of 1: 2.Place on the stove, bring to a boil, then remove immediately. Now let the future dye brew. The longer the raw materials are infused, the richer the color will turn out.
  3. Prepare tissues by immersing them in fixative solution. For berries: 0.5 cups of salt per 2 liters of water; for vegetables: vinegar + water in a ratio of 1: 4.
  4. Items can now be immersed in dye. Keep them until you get the desired shade. Remember that the fabric will become slightly lighter as it dries.
  5. Dry fabrics on a hanger to avoid streaking.

Tips and Tricks

  1. Weigh the product before painting to determine the exact amount of dye.
  2. After staining with chemical agents, dishes must not be used for cooking!
  3. For silk fabrics: add 1 tablespoon to the water while rinsing. vinegar.
  4. For woolen fabrics: dissolve the paint in hot water.
  5. For denim and linen clothes: first add a pinch of soda ash to the paint and then dissolve it in water.

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