How to Make Household Stains into Dye

by Sarah - Craft Invaders

I have to admit my husband looked less than convinced when I excitedly tried to explain, this, my latest crafty light-bulb moment.  “Why on earth would you want to put stains on something” he said, “surely people mostly try and remove them?”. 

Fortunately my kids were far more impressed by my creativity, and we spent a fun afternoon testing out my theory. Turns out you can make household stains into dye!

 

How to Make Household Stains into Dye

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

We used natural cotton bags, and prepared them by simmering them in a fixative (1 part vinegar to 4 parts water) for about an hour. Having scoured the cupboard, we decided to try tomato ketchup and Mustard for our household stain dyeing experiment.

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

We sketched our designs on the bags lightly in pencil, so we had a guide to follow. 

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

Then painted on our ketchup and Mustard stains.

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

We left our designs to dry, and then covered them with a tea towel and ran over them with a hot iron.

Breath held, they were then popped into the washing machine and run on a rinse cycle to remove the mustard and ketchup.

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

Having spied the dodgy bottle of wine left on the side, we also decided to try some tie-dyeing! 

We wrapped elastic bands around the bags, and popped into the wine for a couple of hours.  Once they had steeped we rinsed them under the tap.

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

And here are our finished bags. We are really happy with how our making household stains into dye experiment turned out! 

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

The ketchup pattern isn’t as vibrant as the mustard and red wine, but still looks really pretty in the flesh.  Next time we’re going to try cocoa powder and blitzed up grass cuttings!

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us.

 

The kids had such fun trying out our household stain dyes, and it’s a great craft to have a play with without spending lots of money. For more fun dyeing ideas check out our DIY Fabric Paint Recipe, our Eco Prints post and Making Dye from Lichen tutorials.

 

Our fun craft tutorial explores how you can use household stains as dye at home. Check out what we tried and what worked best for us. #dye #dyeing #dyefabric #kidscrafts

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40 comments

Ickle Pickle February 15, 2016 - 9:35 pm

This looks such fun – what a great idea. Fab post and directions. Kaz x

Reply
Sarah - Craft Invaders February 16, 2016 - 7:59 pm

Thanks Kaz, it’s a really fun activity to do with kids 🙂

Reply
Idaintyit February 15, 2016 - 3:46 pm

What a fab idea! And something fun and different to do with the kids. Love this

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Sarah - Craft Invaders February 16, 2016 - 8:02 pm

Thank you, my kids love doing this craft 🙂

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Jolene monaghan February 15, 2016 - 3:20 pm

what a fantastic idea.. im not crafty but i use to love tie dieing my tshirts in the early 90,s … i would love to try this with my little one x

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Sarah - Craft Invaders February 16, 2016 - 8:04 pm

Any of the tutorials on our site anyone could do I promise! Let me know if you give it a go 🙂

Reply
Mudpie Fridays February 15, 2016 - 7:38 am

I did a science experiment at school where we used vegetables to dye cloth. It was great fun I think from memory (24 years ago!!) red cabbage worked quite well as well? I think this is great idea and very educational x

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Sarah - Craft Invaders February 16, 2016 - 8:08 pm

I’ve read that red cabbage is great as a dye. Lots of the things I try with the kids are inspired by hazy memories of what I did as a kid – think the one I was keenest to do with them was the owl pellets 🙂

Reply
Laura February 14, 2016 - 5:35 pm

What a good way to pass a day with the kids. I wonder how many times you’ll be able to wash it before more of it fades?

Reply
Sarah - Craft Invaders February 16, 2016 - 8:15 pm

Oh that’s a good question. Because they are bags I only ever washed them the once. I’ll try it on a T-shirt some time and experiment 🙂

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