My LL Bean sweaters came the other day. I was thrilled, until I tried them on. The first one, a ribbed cardigan, makes me look all doughy. Perhaps I am doughy, but come on!
The second one, the one with the pockets, is a better fit, but Ill have to alter that one as well as the cardi. I was thinking of returning them for a smaller size, but I got a size below me to begin with, and they were on sale, and they were out of the cardi last I looked.
So I'm stuck with them. It's not a bad stuck, more of a I have to work with these a lot stuck.
I left the house at 8:30am this morning with full intent on getting the supplies I needed to dye one of the sweaters today. I walked (I like to walk) to three stores looking for a stew pot and some dye. Previously someone mentioned a higher quality dye, and I would have tried that, but I'm already out nearly $100 for these all cotton sweaters, and i didn't want to shell out $30+ for dye when I already had to buy stuff.
After finding the dye at a grocery store up the street and two blocks down from where I first went, I couldn't find a stew pot large enough for the sweater. I wanted something that would give the fabric some room to swish, so I could be certain that the dye was evenly touching all the fibers.
My last stop was a Ross, a discount department store. It was a fairly picked over one that is in a complex above a grocery store and a DSW shoe warehouse. I know. Every time I go in, which isn't often, I'm disappointed. That trend continued today. I didn't find my stew pot, but I did find a rather large plastic Umbra garbage can that was just the right size and price.
I got it home thinking all sorts of things:
How hot can I make the water so it does not harm the plastic and crack it?
Will this fit in the sink in case it cracks?
Can I pick it up with the water in it?
All these thoughts were running through my heat as I set it in the sink. It fit. *whew* I decided to use hot tap water and a kettle of boiling water to top it off.
I soaked the sweater in hot water and then added the dye to the trash can with half a package of salt. Once I mixed the soup, I added the sweater and it soaked up the dye in a flash. The water was a great temperature and was smoking for a good 30 minutes.
Now, the challenge for me was to pour out the dye water without splashing. I was up against hot water that would stain anything it touched, a heavy plastic container that was being used for a purpose it was not intended, a soaked dead weight piece of fabric that could plop out and splatter all over the counter, and plastic baggies covering my hands because I forgot to get gloves.
Success! I managed to pour out the water very, very slowly and it drained with no incident. Even the rinse water when I filled the bin (about 2/5th of the way max at all times) the first time. I then did a rinse a second and third time, salting the water to lock in the dye. After that, I washed the thing in the can, and rinsed it twice again.
The wash took out tons of dye and by the last rinse the water was very clear. I was so happy.
I squeezed out the water and now the sweater is hanging outside drying. After some time, I might throw it in the dryer and see if it shrinks a bit. I still plan on tailoring the thing later on.
Overall the process went smoothly and I could have messed up major. I kept thinking that the trash can was going to split and pour hot salted dye all over my rental floor. Man, that would have sucked.
My casualties were small. A few aftermath splatters on the paintjob and some will fade eventually stains on the counter.
Overall not too bad.
As for the color, I'm very pleased with the navy. For the other one, I plan on making it brown. Those two colors will go best with my wardrobe. Once the sweater is dry, I'm planing on adding more button holes. Stay tuned!
I don't think I'll dye the other one for a while.
I need brown dye first off.
That, and deying is exhausting.