The dye that I chose to use is Pro MX Reactive Dye. It will dye cellulose fibers — plant based fibers like cotton, linen, ramie, hemp, viscose rayon, bamboo, jute, paper, wood, basket reed, even silk at room temperature, 75° – 95° F. I purchased these dyes through online from Pro Chemical. What I really like about the Pro MX Reactive Dye because they create colors that are super vibrant which remind me of the colors in the exhibit and that we see in the coral reefs. I also can mix the powders together to create different colors. These dies when done correctly will hold extremely well during the rinse cycle unlike premade dyes such as RID. Another good place to buy your dye materials is Darhma Trading, here you can find natural and organic dyes.
I have chosen a 100% cotton light weight cotton white fabric with no finishes instead of canvas. Originally I wanted to go with a raw canvas in order give the piece more structure and thickness. I change my mind on the fabric because the colors will be more vibrant on the white fabric and the material will be much easier to fold, this will give a much richer and radiant finish.
Here is a list of all materials and tools that I will need for the tie dye process.
MX Reactive Dyes-Pro Dye Activator or Soda Ash-Urea
Rubber Bands or Hemp String, Plastic Bag, Scissors
Gloves, Mask, (2) 2 Gallon Buckets, Mixing Spoon, Jars for Dye
The colors that I have chosen are Pro Leaf Green 700N, Pro Navy 412, Pro Lemon Yellow 114, and Pro Cotton Candy 303.
Here is a some video’s on mixing the dyes for you visual people =)
Preparing Dye Activator
I will use one of my previous tie dye projects as template to follow for my tie-dying design.
Follow directions for Urea and Dyeing
Final Project Results
A few things went wrong overall and I had to be creative in order to try to save my project. The first thing is that my end result with the tie dye was somewhat washed out. I think what went wrong is the temperature when setting, it was to cold. Second when stenciling I used a spray fabric paint (Soft Fabric Paint by Simply Spray), it bled through and made a huge glob. So I frantically washed out the dye, thank God most of it came out. When stenciling for the second time I practiced on some material by spraying and dabbing with a wash cloth. This helped a little but still bled a lot beneath the stencil. So I used a spray adhesive (General Purposes 45 Spray Adhesive by 3M), this helped a lot!!! For now on I will use this spray adhesive, I love it, after stenciling it peels right off. It left some residue but I didn’t mind the texture. I ran low on fabric paint so it left it somewhat faded. I still wasn’t completely satisfied but I did notice I liked the 3 dimensional stencil over the picture. So with the adhesive I played with the shape of the stencil and tried to shape as if it were crawling of the picture. Beneath it you can see the petals from The Flower of Life. I originally was going to use a resin to coat the final picture but ran short on time due to having to fix mistakes =(.
Overall I was inspired the hyperbolic geometry that can be found in The Flower of Life and wanted to represent this. I’m not completely happy with my overall project but I am happy with my experience.