Remember this dress from several months ago? Back then it was a drab oatmeal color and a size too big. Since then I've had it altered to fit me and dyed it a fun shade of green, and I'm pretty pleased with the results. It has much more of a mod trenchcoat feel to it now, which I tried to play up here by adding the vintage 60's shirt.
The dyeing process was a lot of work, but well worth it for the excellent results. The dye I used was a fiber reactive dye from the Dharma Trading Company. The dye only works on natural fibers, so it colored the linen fabric beautifully while leaving the off-white topstitching, plastic buttons, and nylon lining intact (as a bonus, it didn't stain the sink either). This gives it a very professional appearance; in fact, you'd be hard pressed to discern that it wasn't made this way originally. Click the picture at left if you want a close up of my handiwork -- the pop-up photos are all zoom-able too.
Before I started this project I knew literally nothing about dyeing clothes. For instance, I was completely ignorant of the fact that there were several other supplies I needed besides just the dye (shame on me for not reading the directions before I ordered the dye!). Thus, I ended up having to place 2 orders, one for the dye and one for the soda ash, Calsolene oil, and a few other things. However, now I've got all the stuff I need to do lots more dyeing, so with the exception of different colors I'm all set for whatever other projects I want to try. I'm thinking this will be a great way to transform pieces that either are a light color and getting dingy, or that I'm just tired of. Just as a simple coat of paint can completely transform a room, a different color can make old clothing new again.
Shirt, dress: thrifted
Brooch: vintage Trifari