Dyeing a boned corset?
  • Hello! I am looking to dye a corset I had custom made through a professional dyer. I have sent e-mails to a number of places but have yet to receive a response. I am wondering one thing: the corset is boned with galvanized spiral steel boning with aluminum caps on the ends and the grommets are nickel-plated brass... do I need to worry about any of these metals reacting badly with certain dyes? My biggest worry would be if immersion dyeing is used and the boning reacts then it would stain the outer materials of the corset (silk dupioni with a cotton lining). Are there any dyeing techniques and/or dye types that would be less likely to cause the metal to stain the fabric? Could the dye remove the nickel from the brass? I have seen in multiple places on here that it is not recommended to use galvanized steel tubs for dyeing clothing because it can react with the dye... what exact do you mean by "react with"?

    Thank you so much for the information!!
  • Hi ChickadeeChick,

    Thanks for writing in.
    ....this is a tricky one, however, perhaps not impossible. Because the fabric you want to dye is cotton & silk you could use the Procion MX dye which is a cold water immersion dye which uses soda ash as the fixative.
    I did find a paper which addresses the issue of soda ash and metal corrosion in a more industrial setting which suggest that steel and nickle alloys are relatively unaffected and that aluminum is affected at higher temperatures and concentrations so I'm thinking you should be fine. Here is the link if you'd like to check it out yourself: ooks.google.com/books?id=qTfNZZRO758C&pg=PA210&lpg=PA210&dq=soda+ash+reactions+with+metals&source=bl&ots=8_pIo8pRQU&sig=g5eUv2tje0Qt5POl19l7FcE1LTg&hl=en&sa=X&ei=7AxGUeXxHsSfqQG1xYG4Cw&ved=0CE8Q6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=soda ash reactions with metals&f=false
    Your professional dyer should have a pretty good idea what would be safe as well.
    One last point; many people will recommend against using Procion MX with soda ash on silk, however, I've done so many times and never had a problem with my silk being affected. After rinsing & washing the silk post dyeing I will generally do a second rinse with a mild vinegar solution (1/2 cup vinegar to a couple gallons of water) then rinse that out and call it good.

    good luck!
    annette
  • ChickadeeChick -

    I had the same issue you do - I wanted a corset a different color. I cheated & painted it with Lumiere and it is stunning.

    Makalina