One of the unfortunate and hilarious side effects of the costuming I do is the grand and beautiful messes I make. Some of the best have been dyeing messes. These inevitably end up looking like murder scenes in the bathroom, as you can see. This was my initial attempt at a gradient dyeing of Vanille’s skirt. Nick complained for days and actually began avoiding that bathroom. I just laughed and drove the sewing machine faster.
Gradient dyeing is an experimental art form, from what I can tell. I have never been able to discern any methodology to what generally becomes a mess of green hands and stained grout lines. With this final failure (I used spray fabric paint on wet fabric, thinking it would soften the gradient, and only succeeded in streaking the crap out of the dye), I turned to my greatest teacher, the Internet, for more information.
With the gradient dyeing trend from last year in full swing, a whole new slew of information made itself available as people turned to DiY alterations and projects. The dye experts over at Dharma Trading got enough questions that they finally decided to outline the whole thing, called Ombré. It did seem pretty similar to the techniques I tried when gradient dyeing my Yuna side skirt, for example: dipping and adjusting and dipping and adjusting.
My interest in using the spray fabric paint as opposed to Ombré dyeing was because it’s a circle skirt and not a rectangle of fabric like detailed in their instructions. How on earth would I get a circle to hang straight across? I can see now that I actually used some of the points they discussed in the Ombré directions. I will probably give this another shot using a dip dye and a hanger (or two, to avoid the fabric touching each other and streaking) with extra clips; with proper adjustment, I should be able to get the skirt to carefully hang straight… maybe not perfectly, but dyeing is always a little unpredictable! And messy. Did I mention messy?