Instagram Handle: @visuallywoven
Pattern Name and Designer: Kaleidoscope Dye Kit by We Gather
Size Made: One Size
Materials Used: Kaleidoscope Dye Kit in Warm and Neutral, cotton bandanas, scraps of Essex in Natural & Essex YD in Heather
Ever since Kaleidoscope Dye Kits by We Gather arrived in our store I knew I wanted to try it out! Lately, with the snow and cold I really wanted to bring some color to my weekend as I longingly wait for the Spring!! Who is with me?! I love this kit, because it allowed me to play with color and pattern, learn new skills and I ended up with fun and colorful bandanas to wear. In my opinion it doesn’t get any better than that!
I couldn’t decide on the color way, so I decided to try them both! I’m glad I did, because each is appealing in its own right, and I got to experiment a lot more. The great thing about this kit is that this small and sustainable package includes almost everything you’ll need (except the obvious bigger things that we usually have around the house, such as a tray or just a plastic cover for your working surface, a small bucket or two, three cups or jars for mixing your dye, and paper towels or rags).
The instructions are easy to follow along. One thing I wanted to point out, that each We Gather kit contains enough dye for about 1 lb. of fiber and one cotton bandana to work with, so definitely gather up a few more dyeable goods that are cellulose fibers (cotton, linen, hemp, rayon or bamboo), but make sure to prewash them first, to ensure your fabric is ready for the new exciting color! I had some extra bandanas and handkerchiefs, as well as few scraps of Essex to test it out.
The next step is folding the fabric, and the instructions have suggestions for accordion, square and diagonal folds, and I tried them all, as well as some variations. The fold will determine the design repeat on the fabric, so in order to achieve a specific result I ended up hacking a ‘test’ design on a paper towel, it works really well! After a soak with soda ash dissolved in warm water, the fabric is ready for the application of the dyes.
Each kit contains three colors; the warm colorway includes: russet, fuchsia and zinnia; the neutral colorway includes: oyster, clean gray and arbor. Each powder packet is simply dissolved in a jar or a cup, and I certainly still had some dye left, so jars with the lids worked great for me. I labeled the jars before I put the powders to keep track of colors. I lightened the oyster color in an additional cup to make it more subtle.
There’s something very satisfying about applying the color to substrate, and this is no different, the pipettes are really fun and fast to make the design. The only tip I have for the folded patterns is checking to ensure the dye went through all the layers,I had to flip it around and apply the color to the other side, it depends on how many folds you have.
After letting the newly colored fabric rest for about 10 min and heat setting it, I gave it a final quick wash with textile detergent (included in the kit). Et Voila!!
I’m ready to wear my colorful bandanas through Spring time (if I can wait that long!), I like adding just a touch of color to my otherwise ‘neutral’ outfits. I’m also planning to use up my leftover dyes, so I’m thinking a T-Shirt, socks, or a baby onesie would be great next projects : )