Monday, May 2, 2011

Tips on dying silk scarves with tissue paper

Had a go this morning at dying a silk scarf using Japanese silk tissue paper.  If you want to attempt it you'll need:

* A silk scarf
* Japanese silk tissue paper
* Vinegar water in a bowl (I used a 'glug' of vinegar in a half full bowl)
* Spray bottle - with one to one vinegar to water
* Plastic to cover your work space
* Plastic gloves if you don't want to dye your hands

1. Soak the scarf in vinegar water for a bit.  I think I soaked mine for 10 or 15 minutes
2. Wring it out and lay it on your covered surface.  Anywhere the scarf isn't totally flat will result in a bit of a marbling effect.
3. Tear or cut the paper into pieces and place at random or in a pattern on your scarf.  (I promise there is a purpose for the pattern on mine.  I'll show you in a couple days) You may need to spray a bit with the spray bottle as you go to keep the paper in place.
4. Once you've covered the scarf spray the entire thing to dampen the paper enough to stick to the scarf.  You don't want to spray too much because you don't want it to run when you pick it up to hang it to dry.
5. Press the paper into the scarf to get the color to soak in more.  I covered mine with the plastic and pressed over the plastic.
6.  Hang to dry.  The paper will start to fall off once it dries.
7. Remove any hold out paper and rinse to remove the vinegar smell.
8. For all intensive purposes you now have a beautiful scarf.  But it's not entirely color fast.  I rinsed mine for a while waiting for it to run clear and it never did.  I'm going to do a bit more research but so far I haven't found a way to make it completely color fast.  I just wouldn't recommend wearing it over a white outfit in the rain.
Little hands love to help rip paper.

The paper after it was all said and done.  It was like a work of art in itself. 


  1. I remember something about salt and color fastness...

  2. heat set it using an iron or10 or 15 minutes in warm dryer