Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Ombre: Part 2

Last time I shared a little inspiration for the baby's room.
The ideas were intended for a set of curtains that needed some help.

We (Ben, at my request) repainted the room--it's a very subtle change. When I did it the first time around, I chose a slightly off-white for the bottom which ended up clashing with the already white white trim. And, when we brought in the white white crib, the whole room looked dingy. So, my patient husband repainted the bottom half of the room white--again.

But then I was left with a set of curtains that were also off-white. And therefore dingy looking. So, I could have made some new ones or bought some new ones, but I decided to try and work with what I already had.

So, I bought some supplies instead:


(I'm going to re-purpose the metal bucket in the baby's room too!)

And I got to work.
Step 1 was dunking my curtains in the bathtub to get them wet (I did this project in the kids' bathroom--one of the rooms in the house we haven't touched since moving in 4 years ago).



Then I got the dye ready. I used about 3 gallons of the hottest water I could get like the instructions on the bottle called for. But, I only poured in half of the dye. A cup of salt went in as well. I completely submerged my curtains. It definitely would have turned out better if I could have left a little bit at the top completely white, but I needed to  cover up the off-white color completely. So in they went.


Once I had them in the dye for about 5 minutes, I rigged up a little pulley system that I made out of dowel rod (about $1.27 at Lowe's) and some twine (you will probably also see that twine again soon...). I hoisted the curtains up about 1/3 of the way. I left them there for another 15 minutes or so.



Then I lifted them up even further so that just the bottoms were in the dye. At this point I added the rest of the bottle of dye to the bucket. This is what really made a difference in the color gradation. Simply pulling the curtains out of the dye at different times didn't really do anything.




Here you can see how the bottoms got darker with the extra dye.



I turned the dowel rod the other direction and turned on the shower. I rinsed them out for a looonnngg time. When the water was running as clear as I could get it, I put the curtains back in the bucket and took them to the washing machine for the final test. I was hoping the the darker dye wouldn't just end up blending  in with the rest of it.

Once the curtains were washed and dried, I added a blackout liner to them. It was super easy and I got the idea and instructions from www.makeit-loveit.com, another one of my favorite sewing websites. These are for a newborn's room after all.

And here they are all hung up.



I'm happy with how they turned out--although it's more of a color block look than a true ombre. The curtain on the right ended up with a more definite line of demarcation and I'm not sure why or how that happened. If I were doing this project again, I would start my dye with 1/3 of the bottle and add progressively more to the dye bath to get more gradation. There are a ton of tutorials around on ombre dyeing if you  google it or look on Pinterest. My only regret is not dipping a white onesie while I was at it.

Dyeing stuff is fun--even if my hands were blue for a couple of days.
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2 comments:

  1. Looks great! I'd be terrifying of staining my bathtub... but I'm aaaalmost ready to try it.

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    1. No stains here! I just cleaned it with the regular cleaner that I always use.
      Go for it!

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