To dye, to stain, no more..(or at least less visibly)

This afternoon, a box of kelly green Rit dye and I got down to inking up some kitchen towels and cloth napkins. These towels and napkins started out either white or cream but have more recently become an unpleasant blend of dingy yellow-ish brown, cream and tan smears. I probably should have known better than to bring light colored fabrics into our house as ML is well known for his abilities to turn previously white things brown.  I tried my luck nonetheless and things turned out as they usually do…a little darker than they started.

The story starts to turn my way when I remembered that I had purchased a trusty box of kelly green rit dye for $.60 on sale sometime during my college years. How cool would having a bunch of green towels and matching napkins be….VERY cool. WARNING: I haven’t dyed anything since my high school days of tie-dying everything I could get my hands on, so I was forced to diligently read and attempt to follow the poorly written directions on the Rit box. It was a long and tedious process – and it went something like this:

1. put all napkins and towels into hot water
2. wring them out
3. heat up 1 Cup of water and add the dye powder – stir a bit to mix it up (wear rubber gloves for this)
4. find a giant plastic container and add 3 gallons of hot water
5. add 3/4 Cup of salt to the giant plastic container
6. add the dye mixture and stir (wear rubber gloves from this point on)
7. add each item to the big mixture and stir it around
8. once all items are in the mix, stir it around with your gloved hands
9. let sit for 15 minutes, stir again, repeat
10. wring out all items
11. dump mixture down a drain
12. put the items back in the big container and keep rinsing the items with cold water until the water is clearish or you are tired of this process (it took me about 4 rounds before I gave up)
13. wash the items in warm water and do an extra rinse cycle
14. hang out to dry

In hindsight, probably more work than it was worth, but at least we won’t look like total slobs when we have friends over.

The next step was totally worth the work! I used my woodland creature cookie cutters to trace appliques which I then sewed on to the towels and napkins. I was able to use some old fabric and ended up with a super cute bright end product.

From left to right starting on the top row: fox, moose, snail, bird, porcupine, squirrel!


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