Homemade playsilks - colourfastness?? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 02-11-2013, 01:11 PM - Thread Starter
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I was super excited to come across the idea of dying playsilks with kool-aid and made a couple last week for a friend's daughter's first birthday. The tie dye came out beautifully and I just assumed that the colour would stick because so many people seem to be using kool-aid to dye playsilks.


When I tested the colourfastness, however, much of the colour came out of the silks :(


Am I doing something wrong? I used vinegar, which I assumed acted as a mordant since I saw it in various posts and I used boiling water (do not have a microwave).


Anyone have experience with this and any advice? I was looking forward to making more for more gifts but don't want the colour to run out of them all!




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#2 of 4 Old 02-15-2013, 09:39 PM
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I am far from an expert on this, but I have heard that food dye based (including kool aid) dyes fade rather quickly even if you set them. I've kool aid dyed wool and not had a problem, but I guess for long term and washability it is a problem.


I have the impression that you need an acid dye for dying the animal fibers (wool, silk) and expecting it to stay bright and colorfast. Then you would use the mordent (vinegar). You may want to search that one out.


Hope I helped somehow :)

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#3 of 4 Old 06-07-2014, 05:57 AM
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I've made them before and dyed with food coloring and they are not colorfast, but there isn't a need to wet them. They've gotten splashed with water a couple times and I can tell where they got wet, but it isn't a big deal.
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#4 of 4 Old 06-19-2014, 04:54 AM
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I use Dharma Trading silk dye. It is not natural. But it is colorfast. (Purple does bleed out a bit, I've found, so I don't dye purples any more.) If you wash the playsilk well after the dying I don't see why it wouldn't be safe for children. I don't use the fixative they sell when I dye silk, I am a little leery of it. But I do dye clothing and underclothing and have worn the items for years with no problems. However, as I said, it's not natural, if that is important to you.
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