Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Silk Dyed Easter Eggs
Here's the quick run-down:
You need 100% silk for this to work. Make sure to check the labels to make sure you're not buying polyester, which can look similar. I grab old ties at the thrift store where they're all under a buck. And remember: when it comes to ties, you may not want ugly ones on your man, but ugly ties do make pretty eggs! You could also use silk from an old blouse, a scarf, whatever.
Next you cut a piece large enough to cover an egg. Wrap the egg with the right side of the fabric making contact with the egg. The right side is the printed side, or the side that would be on the outside of the tie. You want to try to wrap the fabric as tight as you can without breaking the egg of course. The more direct contact the silk has with the egg shell the clearer the imprint of the pattern. Where there are folds in the fabric you'll get kind of a swirly water color effect. I love those parts- it adds to the charm. Once wrapped, tie with a piece of string or a twisty tie. (Do yourself a favor and go with the twisty tie!)
A little thought: You're going to use the largest part of the tie, at the bottom, and be left with the rest of it which might not be large enough to use again. What I do is take all of those pieces and just stitch them together on my sewing machine. It's really fast and then I'm left with a brand new piece of silk to cut squares from. You can get a lot more use out of them that way and it's fun to combine fabrics. Also, you can use a piece of silk more than once, but it loses a large amount of it's potency after the first dye, so I always just toss the used pieces.
After the eggs are wrapped, you're going to wrap them again with a light colored light weight piece of fabric. An old pillowcase or sheet is perfect. If you go to the thrift store to get ties, you may want to grab a pillowcase too. Otherwise you might get impatient at home and just take one from your kid's room. Don't tell my husband I did that.
This is my favorite part. I get so antsy waiting for them to cool. It's always a surprise to see what went on in that little package. Below are some of my results. I have to say that the first one is probably my favorite egg of all the ones I've ever done. I can't believe how clearly those flowers transferred and how bold the colors turned out. Incredible!
I absolutely love the cool stripy, swirly thing going on in this one
So that's that. Try this out and let me know how it goes. Everyone will wonder how on earth you did it! Just tell them you're a genius.
Safety Note: A few people have asked about the dye transferring to the actual egg. Know that it is not food safe dye. Who knows where the silk came from our how it was colored.