That is, until this month. Our dear friends have a daughter getting married at the end of this month, and she wanted a blue petticoat, so they came to me. I gave them all the usual warnings: I am not an experienced dyer, I might ruin it, it might come out streaky, but they still wanted me to try. I agreed to try. After all, she did want blue…and you know how I am with blue things…
Here’s my simple tutorial, just in case someone recruits you to dye their petticoat.
- Buy Rit dye. I used the liquid form, but you can also use the powdered Rit dye. Just make sure you dissolve it completely so your petticoat doesn’t end up sprinkled with little “surprises.”
- Fill your washer with the hottest water you can get. I filled it to the highest level so there was plenty of room for the petticoat to move around.
- Submerge the petticoat so it is completely wet. Take it out and temporarily put it in a plastic container.
- Put on rubber gloves unless you like blue hands. Add the Rit dye to the water in the washer. The instructions on the bottle said to add 1 cup of vinegar if you are dyeing nylon. I only had apple cider vinegar, but I used it anyway. Make sure the dye is completely mixed in.
- Put the petticoat in the washer. You can push it down with your hands, but I used a long wooden dowel. Sometimes pockets of air get caught between the multiple layers, so I used the dowel to move the petticoat around until the air could escape.
- I set my washer for a gentle cycle so the petticoat wouldn’t get beaten to death. Every five or ten minutes, I pulled it out and untwisted it. I wanted to make sure that it dyed evenly.
- Keep the petticoat in the dye bath for about 30 minutes, or until it is the shade you want. You will probably have to reset your washer a couple times because that is longer than a typical wash cycle, especially on gentle.
- I rinsed the petticoat twice and then hung it up to dry.
- Be sure to clean your washer afterwards. I ran an empty load with detergent, bleach, and hot water, along with an extra rinse.