Cold Water Hand Wash

There are 4 main steps to take when dyeing fabrics at home:





~3 minutes

~5 minutes

(+ more time if you need to wash the fabric)

~10 minutes

~75 minutes

(+ more time for washing and rinsing)


  • Get prepared

    • Although all our dyes are non-toxic, care should always be taken when handling any chemicals

    • Avoid prolonged inhalation of dye powder, as this can cause an allergic reaction in some people

    • If you are concerned about the appearance of your hands, wear latex gloves for protection against temporary skin staining

    • Read and stick to the instructions

    • Make sure you have all of the required equipment before you start, and enough time to complete the process


  • Prepare the fabric

    • Identify the fabric type before dyeing

      • Natural fabrics dye best (cotton is the best); other fabrics give mixed results

      • Poly-cotton mixtures give reduced shades and can result in blotchy results

      • Synthetic and acrylic fabrics cannot be successfully dyed in the home (these require very high temperature and pressure conditions not attainable in the home)

      • Silk can be dyed under specific conditions (you will have to use an acidic agent, like vinegar)

      • Wool can be dyed, but we do not recommend it, as the high temperatures often cause shrinkage and shape loss of the garment

    • Weigh the fabric before dyeing it

      • The weight of the fabric determines how much dye you should use

      • Each pack of Lady Dye fabric dye is designed to dye 250g of dry fabric to the shade indicated on the pack

      • Varying the amount of dye to fabric ratio will make for lighter or darker shades (i.e. 1 pack of Lady Dye fabric dye to less than 250g of dry fabric will result in darker shades, whereas 1 pack of Lady Dye fabric dye to more than 250g of dry fabric will result in lighter shades)

      • If your garment weighs less than 250g, use a proportional amount of dye and water (e.g. if your garments weighs 125g, use half the pack of dye and half the amount of water. See Weighing Table for more detail)

    • Get the fabric ready for dyeing

      • Wash all fabric before dyeing (any impurities will affect the dyeing process); this is true for both brand new and old fabrics

      • The closer to white the fabric, the better (Lady Dye Colour Remover or a bleach and water solution are recommended)



  • Prepare the dye bath

    • Make up the dye solution

      • Boil 1 litre of water for every sachet of Lady Dye fabric dye

      • Dissolve the dye powder in the water you have just boiled (making a paste with some of the water first helps)

      • Strain the solution through a cloth into another container large enough to contain your fabric AND the dye bath solution (a large pot is best). Please note that the cloth that you strain the solution through will be discoloured by the process, so a clean, old cloth is best)

      • This solution is now what we call the Dye Solution

    • Make up the salt solution

      • Boil another 1 liter of water for every sachet of Lady Dye fabric dye used

      • Dissolve 4 tablespoons (60ml) of salt for every sachet of Lady Dye fabric dye used; make sure the salt dissolves completely

    • Make up the dye bath

      • Add the dye solution to the salt solution

      • Add enough cold water to cover the article to be dyed (up to a maximum of 3 litres per sachet of Lady Dye fabric dye)

      • Well done - your dye bath is now ready!



  • Dye the fabric

    • Dye the garment

      • Wet your fabric

      • Immerse the garment in the dye bath

      • Put the dye bath onto the stove and slowly heat it

      • The shades of colour are best close to 60°C, but do not heat beyond this

      • Move the fabric around continuously so that the dye can penetrate all the folds and creases (it also ensure an even distribution of heat, and thus colouration)

      • Keep the garment fully submerged for the duration of the dyeing process (at least   20 minutes)

    • Fix the colour

      • Dissolve the fixative (provided in the Lady Dye box) in 250ml of boiling water; this is called the fixative solution

      • Lift the fabric out of the dye bath (you can hold it above the dye bath) whilst you add the fixative solution; stir this into the dye bath

      • Lower the fabric back into the dye bath

      • Keep the temperature to as close to 60°C as possible

      • Move the fabric around for approximately another 45 minutes

      • Rinse in cold water until the water runs clear

      • Warm wash with washing powder

      • Re-rinse

      • Dry


© 2020 by Marketing and Mercantile Services

Call: 021-447-6307 


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