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  • The Disruptive Designer

Dye Inductions


Dye Induction 01.10.2019

This workshop induction introduced the process of dyeing cloth and yarn, something I have not done before to this level of accuracy. Prior experience is mainly with Dylon cold wash dyes from the local haberdashery, mixing in my bath tub and some luck and guess work for colour output. This induction included colour matching to create a recipe for mixing, types of chemicals based on fibre content and processes of washing and mixing dyes to achieve a desired colour. The element of guess work is removed and results are generally accurate. The whole process takes longer than expected and therefore judgement of "worth" has to be implemented if dying is to be used within my project as one of the Reworking processes.

Speaking to David (Dye technician) several questions where discussed, such as "What happens if I dye a whole tailored jacket, with mixed cloth fibres"? and "What is the best method to dye the shell, internal and constructional elements of a jacket"? and finally "Can I change one coloured suit jacket into another colour without distortion, shrinkage or felting?"


I have booked into the dye workshop on 12.10.2018 to VAT test some of these questions, in order to determine whether this process is "worth" additional thought.


My initial thoughts or presumptions for obsolescent jackets is either the colour or pattern of jacket cloth, either looking dated or no longer fashionable. If dying a jacket can refreshen the appearance of the jacket then this could be one viable option for up-cycling consideration, though moral contradictions on sustainability is apparent due to the dying chemical process, chemical waste and water usage.


Further exploration and experimentation into over printing could be explored as well as dying techniques (tie dying etc) to reveal elements of the weave of the cloth.


Questions to investigate:

"How will a wool tailored jacket respond to vat acid dying, if not deconstructed?"

"What elements of a tailored jacket can and cannot be dyed?"

"Can the buttons be dyed and to what quality?"

"What effects to the cloth weave can be created using VAT dying?"

"What is the spectrum of over dyeing various coloured jackets?"

"What is the best process for achieving a high quality of colour dyeing for all 3 planes of the jacket (shell, lining and internal construction?"

"What are the dangers of over dyeing wool cloth?"

"How does the sewing thread of the suit jacket respond to dying"?

"Can the garment labels be reworked or reused in anyway?"