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taeliac's avatar

Tutorial: How to use RIT Dye

The actual tutorial for using RIT Dye.

We do this via a stove top or hot plate, not in the washer. I don't know how the washer thing works out, but this is how we did it for school (doing the test strips, that were used to make this tutorial suppliment)

I hope everything was clear enough to follow, and as always, thank you to ~MedeaHiasobi for her help with this! Let me know if something is hard to follow or you need clarification.

And as always, DON'T EAT THE DYE!

:star: Information on how different fibers dye with RIT Dye can be found here :star:

2007 Sam Lemieux/Taeliac Studio Cosplay [link]
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Skye-Rhyder's avatar
Nylon dye black cold.
Ex-Soldier-Cloud's avatar
Hey I wanted to say thanks for posting this up, I'll really needed help with how to Rit Dye some things, and this helped out a lot. Thanks again! :)
heilei's avatar
Sorry to bother you but I was just wondering on if you could dye white stripes on black fabric another colour.
May not be using RIT specifically, but I was planning on getting a pinstripe suit with either grey or white stripes on black and attempt to dye the stripes another colour like purple or something - obviously tests would be done beforehand, but does it it'd work to you?
never dyed anything for shat before xD
BlackjackGabbiani's avatar
Question. I got fabric that turned out to be polyester, and it said that RIT won't work on that. But you say it will. Is there anything special I have to do for that?
Tahleena's avatar
thanks for the tips :)

i use the bucket method but liked the tips on mixing - and muted color on cotton is what i'm after so thanks for the info :D
taeliac's avatar
Hehe, I'm always happy to help! Whatcha working on, if I may be nosy? :3
Tahleena's avatar
i was going to be using the dye techniques for my Kunoichi cosplay for january :)
lifelike81's avatar
that is really strange that your rayon didn't come out darker. i dye rayon lace all the time and i always have to add less dye than it tells me to because it is too dark. maybe it is because i add salt to the dye bath?
taeliac's avatar
Are you using straight up RIT? Or an acid dye... Otherwise, your lace may be a blend of rayon and something else, which would be handy ;) I wish I knew where to find pretty lace!

Adding the salt doesn't do much of anything with RIT - all of the ingredients for the dye to do it's thing are included in the box, salts and all, so I dont see how that would have an effect, but you never do know with it sometimes ;P
lifelike81's avatar
yep, plain RIT just how it tells me to use it on the box and the contents of the lace read 100% rayon. maybe it is the crappy chemical filled phoenix tap water ;)

i get my lace from they have some really nice stuff but you have to buy the whole spool of it.

i add salt because it tells me to on the back of the box for certain fabrics, rayon being one of them. i know that adding vinegar allows me to dye feathers when plain rit just rolls off leaving them their normal color. i think rit is just hit or miss sometimes. i prefer dylon or prochem dyes personally.
TuesdayNightCompany's avatar
Man, I wish I'd known this before I tried to dye a pair of jeans black. I swore I did everything right (did it on the stove and stirred and argh) but the jeans didn't take the color. Damn you RIT!
taeliac's avatar
Ooh, black is a hard one no matter what, so I doubt it was anything you did! RIT is dodgy like that, or it may have taken a couple if baths to get it dark enough :hug:
TuesdayNightCompany's avatar
Yeah, should have done two baths.
But then I realized I was ruining a pot I had to cook food in.
Thanks for the response!
Icetigris's avatar
Fun fact about this dye: you can dye nylon-based plastics with it. I've seen people dye lacrosse sticks with it. I've heard it works with some other plastics too, though not polyester. I think it has something to do with the plastic's resistance to acids, since, if I recall correctly, RIT is an acid dye. Anyway, just thought I'd share.
taeliac's avatar
Ooh! I'm totally going to experiment with that! Thank you so much for the tip!

Actually, the weird thing (and hany thing) about RIT is that is has both kinds of dye in it - acid and fiber reactive. If it's the acid that does plastics, though, you can get straight up acid dyes ... Hrmmm... Totally adding that to my list of things to experiment with! :glomp: thhank you!
Icetigris's avatar
When you decide to experiment, could you make a test sheet? I'd love to know what RIT does to PETG and ABS. I've seen someone try it on PVC and CPVC pipe; it worked on the former. In fact, if you decide to do test batches, let me know and maybe we can collaborate on a list of samples to test. I can't wait to see what happens :3c
Stank-Dog's avatar
Have you ever tried RIT dye with hemp?
taeliac's avatar
Nope, unfortunately, I haven't! I've meant to get some hemp fabric for a project of mine, but have yet to be able to afford it :O

I would guess, though, that it would be a lot like dying linen. Linen doesn't take too well to dye, but you'll get a lighter, softer color out of it, because it's a stiffer fiber.
midnight-ruby-thief's avatar
hi. im about to dye a blonde synthetic wig into a black one, and i saw ur tutorials on wigs, so i wanted to ask if indian ink would do the job? its permanent and in a squirty bttle. would it work? oh, and ur gallery is awesome btw :heart:
taeliac's avatar
I actually haven't a clue - I've never tried to do much with dying wigs myself, short of using Sharpies to do it kinda by hand ^^;

I think it would be worth a try, but I don't know for certain that it would stick - that type of ink is a natural chemical, not some sort of concoction that was made to work on everything like Sharpies and the like are, so there is a very good chance that a lot of it will just slide off of the plastic fibers! But, if you do decide to do it, please let me know how it goes, I'm always interested in hearing things like that! :glomp:
midnight-ruby-thief's avatar
okay, i will definitely. thank u sooo much! i hope u cosplay went well :hug:
eclecticmuses's avatar
Just wanted to drop by and say that this tutorial plus the fabric color chart has been an immense resources for me! I had to dye some short for a quick costume I threw together for Dragon*Con and your formula worked perfectly. It even made mixing colors an ease. Tonight I'm going to take things up a notch and see if I can get two different types of fabric (polyester and satin) to dye about the same color!

Thanks again for this wonderful resource--you can see the shorts I dyed here.
VietxBoo's avatar
Hello again! :) I plan on dying two pairs of already dark brown pants (which are fading) black in hopes of it turning really dark at least appearing black. A few questions popped up and I immediately thought of this tutorial. Since I don't really have any large pots I can use for it, I was hoping I could just stick a bucket in a pot over the stove or something. Anyways could I use the same dye bath twice? Or would all/most of the dye be used up? Maybe I could add more of the powder? I don't wanna be using too much water. Also would it be a bad idea to wring out the fabric to quicken up the drying process? Thanks a ton!
taeliac's avatar
Well, you're definitely not going to be able to use anything plastic-y for the heat, so you might be stuck finding a huge pot ^^; But, they really don't need to be too big - a stew pot should work if you do each pair of pants separately. If you go to a discount store or a thrift store (or somewhere like Goodwill/Salvation Army) you should be able to find a pot to use really cheap - just be sure that you don't use the pot for cooking afterwards, it's not a good habit to get into, because you're using chemicals to dye, and you don't want to be eating that stuff ;P

And, you'll need to do each separately - there is a chemical reaction that takes place to set the dye in the fabric, and once it's done, it's done - you can't dunk another pair into it, it just won't stick. So, you'd have to empty it out and start again ^^;

Oh! Don't wring fabric - it's best if you take an old, icky towel and roll it up like a swiss roll to get excess moisture out, but that's more of a case of after it's somewhat dry...
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