How to dye corset and shoe laces

This tutorial has been kindly written for Sew Curvy by Maria of Kitty O'Hara Corsetry.  Thank you Maria!

How to Make Your Own Coloured Corset Laces

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Firstly, order your length of laces from Sew Curvy!  They are 100% cotton and so accept dye readily.  Synthetic laces will not dye so easily.

ORDER CORSET LACES

Use a hand dye rather than a machine dye in order to penetrate the laces properly.  Dylon hand dye colours are very close to the colour on the outside of the packet.  

The packet states that the 50g bag will do 250g of dry fabric, but because the laces are relatively small and weigh so little  a bit of maths is required to figure out the right amount.  Four metres of lacing  weighs approximately 10g so for every 4m length of laces you want to dye you will need to reduce the amounts of the other ingredients by the amounts shown below.  Or if you’ve just got a big bundle of lace and want to dye the whole lot just weight it and work out the amounts from there.

For 4m of laces you will need:
2g dye
20ml water
240ml water
10g salt

Double this for 8m of lace, triple for 12m, etc.

Now it’s pretty easy, you can just follow the instructions on the packet, which are:

  • Wash laces thoroughly and leave damp.
  • Dissolve 2g of dye into 20ml warm water.
  • Fill bowl with 240ml warm water, add 10g salt.  Add the dye mixture and stir well.
  • Submerge fabric in water.
  • Stir fabric constantly for 15 mins then regularly for 45 mins.
  • Rinse in cold water, then wash in warm water and dry away from direct heat and sunlight.

Hints & Tips:

Because corset lacing is a flat tube of woven fabric, you have to make absolutely sure that the dye penetrates right through all surfaces of the laces otherwise they may come out patchy and tie dyed.  To make sure that the dye gets right through them, wash the laces first in water, and then wring them under the water until all the air bubbles have come out.  Do the same when they are submerged in the dye.  This way you can be absolutely sure that all the water/dye has completely penetrated the inside of the laces as well as the outside.  Wear rubber gloves to protect your hands from the dye.

The laces will naturally tangle up around themselves so do make sure you loosen any actual knots, otherwise you will end up with tie dye laces!

When your laces dry they will probably be a bit crinkly and need ironing.  A really quick and easy way of ironing them is to run them through some hair straighteners.

Et Voila! You have custom coloured corset laces!

Alison Barlow has kindly supplied the table below which takes the guess work out of how much dye/water/salt you need for the amount of fabric/laces you are dying.  Click on it for a downloadable PDF.

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