Maybe it's the cold weather or that the season of giving is officially underway, but the holidays make us want to hit up our local craft store and DIY-up a storm. So that's just what we decided to do--we're thrilled to announce the start of a new holiday tradition: our first-ever 12 Days of DIY. We're taking items that we love and coming up with cool ways to make them unique, one-of-a-kind gifts.
From Peter Pilotto's primary colored fur scarf to the crazy-cute cropped pastel coats at Oscar de la Renta, the fall 2012 runway left us with a serious craving for rainbow furs. But not wanting to empty our wallets or support animal cruelty, we decided to take the faux fur route and enlist the renowned tie-dye queen Audrey Louise Reynolds. In between working on her collaboration with CFDA winner Elder Statesman and setting up her installation at the New Museum, the Brooklyn-based artist managed to cut a couple hours out of her crazed schedule and introduce us to her insanely cool world of artisanal fabric dye.
From yellow dye composted of a turmeric, saffron, curry, and a handful of other spices, to a galactic blue made from fermenting indigo with a laundry list of ingredients including morning glories, dates, and figs, each color in Reynolds' palette is its own complex science experiment. So considering the amount of labor and knowledge behind each of Reynolds' powders, dying a coat in the exact same fashion would be near impossible.
But not to worry--we asked the color maven to whip up a user-friendly guide for amateurs like us to test out at home. Let us know how your dye day goes, and if you're in New York, stop by and check out Reynolds' workshop at the New Museum (open now-December 23rd)
Here's what you'll need:
- Ladakh "The Revolution Fur Jacket" from Miss KL
- All natural water based fabric paint made by Audrey Louise Reynolds
- Old newspaper to protect your workspace from being stained
- Small bowl
- Distilled White Vinegar
Step 1: Cover your workspace with newspaper, before laying the jacket down flat.
Step 2: Using a paint brush, mix a small amount of pigment with water. Continue adding pigment to water until reached desired hue.
Step 3: Paint the jacket in small sections, using one color at a time. Stop when the front of the jacket is complete.
Step 4: Before paint the other side, hang the jacket overnight to allow the dye to dry. You may want to place newspaper on the floor directly underneath the jacket, in case the pigmenet drips.
Step 5: Paint the back of the jacket using the same technique as the front.
Step 5: Hang the jacket to dry for 24 hours. To ensure the color fixes permanently to the fabric, paint the coat with a layer of diluted vinegar.
Now step back and admire your work!