One of the reasons that I craft is because it gives me screen-free time. Don’t get me wrong, I am a big fan of technology, television, and the internet, however, we as a society have started to depend on it as our free-time space. I come home from work, I turn on the tv. I wake up in the morning, I scroll through Instagram. It’s a nasty habit that wastes so much time.
This year, I have really focused on spending my free time doing things instead of observing things. So instead of scrolling to the end of Instagram, then scrolling to the end of Facebook, and then checking Instagram again to see if anything new has happened, I utilize them in a productive way to find active ways for me to spend my free time.
And that is exactly how I was reminded of sun dyeing. I was on facebook and got a notification for those “On This Day” posts. It showed me an afternoon from a few years back where my mom and I meandered through our local craft store and found something called Inkodye in the clearance aisle. We immediately went home and tried it, finding lots of small knick-knacks to use to create our patterns. I “borrowed” some foam letter stickers from my nieces’ craft supplies and fell in love with the look. It’s such a fast and fun way to create a personalized piece for your home.
What you will need:
- Scrap fabric (we used a cream linen)
- Solar activated dye and detergent
- Foam letter stickers
- Foam brush or paint brush
Find a spot that is not in direct sunlight while you prep your project. Cut your fabric to the size that you prefer. Mine was about 5×7 so that I could put it in a standard frame.
Make sure that you have cardboard or a towel underneath your cloth so that the dye doesn’t seep through. Paint the dye on the cloth in a square large enough for your chosen phrase.
Peel and stick your foam stickers down on top of the cloth, over the area that has dye on it. Make sure the stickers are really down as any little bit of exposed space will change color.
Place your piece in direct sunlight for about 20 minutes and watch the magic (science) happen!
Bring your piece back inside before you peel off your stickers. If you peel it up at all while outside, it will immediately start changing color and you will lose that part of the pattern.
If you are doing a big piece, you can wash it in the washing machine with your detergent. I had a smaller piece so I washed it in the sink with hot water and then rinsed in cold water.
Let dry fully and place in frame. I suggest frames with clear backing because they are interesting for displaying fabric art. Hand and enjoy!
What special phrase would you use in your sun dyed wall art?