Friday, November 6, 2015

Is there a difference in result depending on using snow or ice?

Is there a difference in result depending whether you use snow or ice? To answer this question I dyed two 0,5 yard pieces of cotton fabric, one with snow and one with ice. The fabric was soda soaked and rubber bands were tied around pinches of fabric. Each fabric was put into a separate container. On one fabric snow was packed, on the other ice cubes. Approximately 0,25 cup of Chocolate Brown (Dharma) dye powder was sprinkled on each pile. The containers were left in the studio till the next day. This is how they looked after the snow/ice had melted.



I forgot to take pictures before, sorry. The fabric was marked with a black Sharpie in a corner of each fabric. Unfortunately the dye covered the marks completely. Lesson learned. If you want to be able to read your marks after dyeing, use a small piece of Tyvek instead of writing directly onto the fabric.
The next step was to remove the rubber bands and to rinse, wash and iron the fabric.



The top one is my favorite, but is it dyed with snow or with ice? The lighter areas in the second piece are probably caused because the rubber bands were wrapped more tightly there. In both fabrics, the brown dye powder separated nicely in the component colors.

13 comments:

  1. SO interesting! My guess would be the first one snow, second one ice. But both are very pretty!

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  2. I think the top piece looks like a bed of flowers. So beautiful.

    This winter, you'll have to try your comparison experiment again....

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  3. I intend to try this again. The only question will be do we get snow this season.

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  4. I am pretty sure that the top one is the snow dyed and the bottom the ice dyed. I have done lots and lots of both. If you let the ice completely melt, it washes out some of the dyes and also it acts as more of a resist than the snow in the first place. The snow tends to melt all over.

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  5. They're both stunning. Great tip about the tyvek.

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  6. Thanks for showing this. I would guess (and agree with most here) that the top was the snow. Either way great results. Won't it be difficult to cut into these?!

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  7. Not difficult at all Ann, because I know that I can recreate a similar fabric.

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  8. Thanks for the tip about tyvek. Another method I came across when I was learning to dye is to make snips in the selvage. You need only make yourself a note or chart that explains what each number of snips stands for. In this experiment, for instance, one snip in the selvage could stand for snow, two snips for ice.

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  9. Love using tyvek to label pieces. I'll be regular dyeing with some kids in a couple weeks and I'll be putting their names on tyvek pieces stapled to the corner of the bandanas before they dye them so when I wash them all out, we'll know which one belongs to who! I've found that snow dyed fabric design is softer or more ..can't find the word right now ... maybe muted or subtle. Depending on the ice, the design can have real hard edges. I must say that I like ice dyeing better especially since you can do it all year round. And there are so many variables to ice dyeing from the dye amounts and colors used to the ice. A 1/4 of a cup of dye for a half yard is still way too much. You got some lovely color but a lot of your dye is going down the drain.

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  10. I'm wondering if crushed ice would give results similar to snow? Has anyone tried that? I have tried freeze dyeing, which is when I put a container with soda soaked fabric in the freezer until it gets stiff, then applying liquid dyes... comes out similar to ice dyeing. Lots of fun variables!

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  11. i like them both too...and guess that the top one is with ice.

    I confess that I don't use ice to dye because we have months of snow here (most winters, anyway)...but I have learned that "old" snow gives a more 'ice-dyed' effect than does "new" snow. Out here on the dry prairie, "old" snow is more crystalline and compacted than "new" snow (powder)...and thus seems to give a result that more closely resembles ice dyeing. :-)

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  12. I live in Louisiana.....you are killing me here......

    glen

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  13. I live in Saskatchewan Canada where we usually habe long winters with up to 6 months of snow. Snow dyeing has become my promary dyeing process. All snow is not created equal. I have used Zamboni "snow" to extend or replace outside snow. It is shaved ice and has different properties than snow. I have to change my dyeing process to accomodate using itnor end up with more pastel colours.

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