Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Ice Dyeing

I'm a little late on the ice dyeing craze, but I finally made time to try it.  I read about snow dyeing several years ago and thought it sounded interesting, although not very practical for someone who lives in a warm climate.  Ice dyeing makes more sense, and summer is actually a good time, because the mess can stay outside.

After doing an internet search, I realize there are many variations. I chose to work with the dyes in their powdered state rather than mixing them into a liquid.  I placed a tarp on the ground outside and used a plastic grid from a commercial light fixture to raise the fabric out of the melting ice/dye.

I am pleased with the results, although I have to admit that while it was in process I was not impressed.  I had read some comments that the results are similar to what you get with low water immersion dyeing.  I found a significant difference.  The patterning is hard to describe, but it has a distinctive look. Here are my results (I used Dharma Bronze and ProChem Tobacco on all these pieces):

This is a piece of silk dobby noil (from Thai Silks). It is a wonderful fabric and it took the ice dyeing beautifully.

This is a heavy-weight cotton. 

This is silk habotai, and it was underneath the two previous fabrics to catch the dye as it dripped down. This looks like a typical low water immersion dye.

This is also cotton, and it was dry when I placed the ice cubes on top.  The other fabrics were all wet.

This piece was underneath the plastic grid to catch the drips from the previous cloth.


Have you tried ice and snow dyeing?  What was your experience?


gatheredthreads said...

Wow, there is a face in that last fabric; very lion-like

Anonymous said...

Is the cotton fabric that was dry already prepared for dying by being scoured or with soda ash then dried?

Lisa Kerpoe said...

Yes, it was soda soaked, then dried.

Lynn Smith said...

Gorgeous results! I am new to dyeing and have had fantastic results using rust. I am definately going to try this. Thanks!


tiedyejudy said...

Lisa, I have tried ice dyeing several times now, and really love the results! I have not tried it on dried fabric yet, so will have to add that to my list of things to try, and I love the piece you put under the grid to catch the drips... amazing what happens by chance! Thanks for sharing your results.

Lynda said...

Lisa, I really like the idea of putting a piece under a grid! I wrote the article in QA in 2011 and absolutely love this technique and seeing how others are using it. To me, the results are so much more vibrant and surprising than immersion dyeing. Great to see your fabric. Lynda