Sunday, April 20, 2014

Rug dying

We actually dyed these rugs several months ago, and now they are at Twig in our new location, looking great. The thing about overdyed rugs is that the colors are so vivid and fun.  They add a lot of flair to a room.

First we found some rugs at various flea markets.  This was one of the more challenging steps, because there are lots of expensive vintage carpets out there.  But not that many reasonable ones that also have a good shape and pattern.   This one is really pretty.  The flowers are great.

These two are pretty good, but none of them are super high quality, hand woven rugs.  But they're not bad.

The first two carpets we dyed, we actually bleached first.  But we have come to the conclusion that this isn't necessary, or desirable.  One of the carpets we bleached turned out too light, so you couldn't see the pattern through the dye that well.  So, with these we went straight to the dying.

This tool makes it really easy.  It's a garden sprayer.  Just fill with water, some powdered dye, and some vinegar, put the carpet on a tarp outside, and off you go.  I've tried many types of dyes, and they all work fine.  I don't really have a favorite.

I like spraying different colors around the border and the inside, although the pink one is just pink.  In fact, this first pink wasn't dark enough, so I switched to more of a fuschia color.  I also like it if there are some different colors applied very closely with the sprayer to make the pattern of the old carpet more obvious.  For instance I tried to hit the leave on the pink and blue carpet with some green.

After all the colors are applied, and left to dry for a couple of days, we hang the carpets over a pole between two ladders and really rinse them thoroughly with a hose, and then leave to dry hanging in the sun.

This carpet was a higher quality and we paid more for it, but it really turned out well.  It may be silk.  I sprayed it with a lot of different colors, including some pink on the flowers.  

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