Ignoring the directions

I’ve done a lot of fabric dying over the past few years. Most specifically starting in college when one of my instructors mentioned we could just dye our muslin for our final pieces instead of having to buy different fabric. The muslin came with our supplies paid for by our tuition, and I didn’t have a job so it was a welcome revelation.

Since then I’ve dyed many t-shirts and more muslin for other projects, so when I was asked if I could fix a shirt I knew that was definitely on the list of things I can do.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of what it looked like before. So here is a picture of it after applying the dye.


And this is what it looked like after washing.


As for ignoring the directions, well, see that bottle of dye in the top picture? It’s Tulip Permanent Dye, meant for dying large batches of fabric in hot water with salt. They have other dye specifically for tie dye. But I’m going to share my secret: it works just as well mixed with cold/warm water. As long as you wet the piece first and let it set overnight, you can use it just the same as the “one step” dye.

I Made Up My Mind…

to make the Make Up Your Mind tank by Julie of Knitted Bliss. I fell in love with the Mr. McGregor’s Garden comfy sampler from Knit Picks (unfortunately not available anymore) and decided I would find a pattern for it once I got it. I tried to make my own first, but that didn’t work out quickly enough because I wanted this to be my project on vacation.

After a little searching and swatching, I decided Make Up Your Mind was what I wanted. I cast on provisionally for the 40 in size since my gauge was a bit smaller and I wanted it to be a little more flowy since it would be going over another shirt. I did mostly stick with length measurements from the 34 in size, except when it came to how many times to repeat decreases. Actually, I fudged a lot of the numbers because I kept getting off with the stitch patterns and would just decrease until I had an ok amount for the pattern. I was on vacation; I didn’t want to have to actually count my stitches.

This pattern was fairly easy to work, and very easy to follow. I’d say it’s a good bridge between beginner and intermediate skill sets.If you can knit, purl, yarnover, increase and decrease, you can make this pattern, too. Best of all, no sewing seams! You just graft the shoulders together and weave in the ends and you have a ready-to-wear shirt.

Birthday Shirts!

I’ve mentioned before how June is a busy month for birthdays around here. Well, we have two of them. Now that I think about it, that describes every month March through June. Anyway, I decided to make t-shirts for both birthday boys. One asked me for a Baymax shirt and the other was having a cooking party so I made him a cupcake shirt.

I used my contact paper masking method to create stnecils for some fabric spray paint. I made the basic picture using the paint, then added the details in a couple of different ways.

For the cupcake shirt, I went back in with some embroidery thread to create outlines and details.

The other one being a cartoon character, I thought drawn details would fit better with the style. For that I used my trusty Sharpie pens I found on my trip to the closing Office Depot.

They both turned out really well. Well enough to say definitively that the contact paper method really works for creating stencils for the spray paint. It just takes a lot of light coats of paint to prevent bleeding and pooling at the edges of the sticker.