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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Pass the salt...

We had a dyeing disaster during our school's trial run but that's okay, that's what trial runs are for. These are supposed to be vibrant tie dye, not muddy mixtures. I knew at once where we had gone wrong during the fibre reactive dyeing process. We had forgotten to add the salt and soda ash. But how? I had written myself reams of notes and instructions. It turned out to be a very useful lesson to learn at this stage in the project.
I was and will be using empty yogurt tubs to contain the children's dye. I began the process with some powdered dye in solution contained in a small, labelled water bottle and my salt and soda solutions contained in large labelled water bottles. In a yogurt tub we made up the recipe. 5 tablespoons dye solution, 1/3 cup salt, 1/3 cup soda, 1/3 cup tepid water. Result, successful dyeing first time round.
DANGER* DANGER* WILL ROBINSON! What follows is where we could have done with Robbie the Robot flashing his light and waiving is arms around.
I decanted my dye solution from the small bottle to a yogurt tub. Dye only. No salt, no soda....but this of course is undetectable to the naked eye! In the heat of the general dyeing excitement I assumed this was recipe instead of the raw ingredient it actually was and I had the children put their fabric in it, hence the messy muddy results.
So, the moral of the story is keep your dyeing raw ingredient and your mixtures in easily identifiable DIFFERENT containers!

1 comment:

red tin heart said...

Actually, they look pretty cool! Nita