Sunday, November 11, 2012


Earlier this summer I tried my hand at ice dyeing. My friend Pam was the one who mentioned it to me, so I looked it up and saw a brief description, which included using soda ashed fabric, ice, with powdered dye sprinkled on top. I decided to try something different and actually make ice out of liquid dye and also out of soda ash and put them together with soda ashed fabric in different combinations to see what effects could be achieved. Here is the link to see these results:;postID=1044262122563520983

Recently I've seen a few amazing samples of ice dyes in which the powdered dye method was used so I decided to try this. In both cases I dyed meter sized pieces rather than fat quarters. For my brown-toned piece, I mixed powdered dye (deep orange and black, with pinches of chinese red, lemon yellow and navy) into a tiny jar, stirred up these granules and then proceeded to sprinkle over the ice cubes which covered the fabric.

In the green toned piece(which turned out more bluish), I sprinkled the powder separately; first lemon yellow, then a touch of golden yellow, on to turquoise, cerulean, navy, and finally black.

Lovely aren't they? Tomorrow I will visit fellow dyers and ask for some critiquing and also input on their experiences with ice dyes. More to follow...
UPDATE: After a gro9up discussion, we decided a few more variables needed to be checked out: 1)rate of melt (I left mine outside in the cold and there was still a lot of ice left in the morning), or 2)using shaved ice rather than cubes.
Some of the dyes have more color granules that split out. Cynthia has a set of samples where she sprinkled different powders on wet fabric and you can see the ones with more colors. Turquoise, lemon yellow and fuschia are pure colors so won't display a variety of color. Blacks will. This is certainly something to try with my powders...


cjcscapes.victoria.bc.canada said...

This technique looks like so much fun! We should have tried it at Refuge! I am going to be dying with son Ben then he
is printing over the dyed shirts. Wish us luck and give us more tips and ideas. Hugs Cathy

Unknown said...

I'm really curious about more details of your method. The way your colors pooled is beautiful, and it doesn't look like other ice dye samples I've seen. It looks like maybe you placed the fabric flat in a tub rather than scrunched up over a grate? Or flat on a grate maybe? I'd love to know how to recreate this!