Dyeing Jeans
  • Hi guys.

    I want to dye a pair of white jeans a bright color (yellow, turquoise, pink, or lime) and was hoping you could give me some advice. First of all, which dye should I use and do I need to buy anything else to use with it? Second, are there any tutorials out there or basic instructions I can follow for dyeing them? Last, can anyone recommend some dye colors that would work?

    Thanks,
    Clare


    This is the kind of effect I'm aiming for:
    http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=27491&itemType=PRODUCT&iMainCat=3&iSubCat=1135&iProductID=27491
  • Hi,

    MX dye is the best one to use. Here are the instructions for doing so in the washing machine.

    Washing Machine Dyeing for Cellulose Fibers
    For 3 to 5 pounds of fabric (5 to 7 yards of fabric or 8 to 10 T-shirts)

    Materials:

    Standard top-loading washing machine
    6 to 8 cups salt (non-iodized)
    Procion® MX dye (double the amounts for Immersion dyeing, page 2)
    2 cups soda ash (3 cups for darder shades)
    2 tablespoons Synthrapol
    Wash fabric to remove dirt, grease and sizing with Synthrapol.
    Fill washing machine to medium load (approx. 6 to 8 gallons) with hot water. Add salt and dye, and agitate for 5 minutes, until both are dissolved.
    Place wet fabric in machine and agitate for 20 minutes. (The wash cycle needs to be extended, without the dye being drained or more water added, by turning the machine off and resetting at beginning of wash cycle.)
    In a separate container dissolve soda ash in 1 quart hot water. Gradually add to dyebath in 3 parts at 5 minute intervals, being careful not to pour directly onto fabric.
    Agitate for 50 minutes (30 minutes for pastels).
    Let machine drain the dyebath and complete the rinse cycle. To remove any remaining dye, run through a complete wash cycle with hot water and Synthrapol.


    Celia
  • Hi Clare,

    Check out the Procion MX Color Chart to get a bit of an idea about colors.
    Remember that computer montiors are not the best representation of the color you would get on fabric. The Turquoise #068 is VERY vibrant. You may also like Magenta #034 and Lemon Yellow #004. It should be pretty easy to get bright colors when you are starting with white jeans.

    The jeans you have are 100% cotton aren't they? Any polyester fibres in the mix will not take the dye and your colors won't be as bright.

    Have fun!
    Noelle