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Ice dye....'cause I can't wait for snow

We've had some amazing weather in Calgary this fall. This past weekend, the car registered 0 degrees Celsius, so I just had to do some dyeing. I used Ice cubes instead of snow.



Years ago I played with Parfait dyeing where I scrunched a prepared FQ of fabric in a container and poured dye solution over. I add another FQ and more dye solution of a different colour. Repeat for a 3rd FQ. The dye solution works its way down through the 3 fabrics to create some amazing effects.


I was thinking about Parfait dyeing and some ice dyeing. I thought I'd be really good and plan for 3 sets of 3 fabric parfaits.....let me tell you it's harder than you think!

I started by labeling fqs of fabric from #1 to #12. I'll tell you about the last 3 later, but I wanted 3 sets of 3 parfaits.

The basics of ice or snow dying relies on the ice melting over fabric sprinkled with dye powder. Once the ice melts, the fabric is then processed with soda ash solution. The melted ice needs to drain out of the bottom of the container, so I pulled out the drill and made holes in 3 large yogourt containers.

2021 has been a challenge to use up what I have. Not buy any more fabric than is necessary. Not buy any more notions, etc than is necessary. As I was starting to pull dyes out of the drawer I found these 2 large pots of dye. Do you see the dates on them!!!! I am pretty sure they are still good dyes, but rather than order more dyes in colours I want, I've decided to try to use up everything in my dye drawers. I may end up with some really funky colour combinations!



I used dry fabric and scrunched fq #1 into the bottom of the pot and sprinkled the first colour in my chart over top. I used 1/2 tsp dye powder for each fq then added 8 ice Cubes.

I then added Fq#2 on top and sprinkled a second color dye on top with some ice. Then repeated with the third FQ of fabric.

The parfait sits until the ice melts. I usually leave everything for 24 hours or at least overnight.


I arranged the 3 pots on a basket I placed upside down to let the ice melt. The last 3 FQs were arranged in a 2nd basket underneath to catch the ice melt.

In the morning (I did wait!) I added a chemical water solution (soda ash, salt and water) over the containers. I didn't measure my chemical water, I just poured over the fabrics until most of the water had soaked its way through and dripped out the bottom. This took about an hour.



I dumped everything into the sink and rinsed the containers out as I ran hot water over the fabrics. I then put all the fabrics in the washing machine for a couple of long, hot washes. I usually check to see if the water is clear in the 2nd wash cycle. If not, I'll add a 3rd and even a 4th cycle to the wash.


Once the water is completely clear, I throw everything in the dryer for 20 minutes or so. I pull them out while still damp and enjoy touching and admiring them as I press them flat. I usually fold and stack on my shelves for a while to let the fabrics age!


Here are my fabrics. For the life of me I can't get them in the correct order.....so enjoy.

Happy Quilting. Watch for my next dye adventure!




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