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A Colorful Halloween Costume To (Rit) Dye For

*this blog post is collaboration with Rit Dye to bring color to your Halloween this season.

It's the most ghoulie, fun and no doubt, wonderful time of the year for - Halloween! Traditionally, Halloween costumes are of the scary kind, but it would not be me, if I wouldn't inject it with some color. So here I am showing you how to make your color wheel costume with Rit Dye, to spin around at any party this Halloween season. This is an easy to follow DIY, all you need is fabric, Rit Dye and a sewing machine - a bit of patience if you have never sewed anything before. 

Before we start however, let me talk a bit about Rit Dye

Rit Dye is the only fabric dye you need in your cupboards. They offer dye for natural and synthetic fibers, with nearly 500 color blend possibilities, giving you instructions on how to mix them. This dye is made to make all color lovers happy.

Now let's get started!

Things you need for the skirt itself:

  • Fabric
  • Sewing machine
  • Paper, measuring tape, ruler & calculator

Things you need for the dyeing job:

  • Rit Dye (make sure to get the correct dye for your fabric, All Purpose for the natural fibers, and DyeMore for synthetic fibers)
  • The colors I used: golden yellow, tangerine, coral, rose quartz, cherry red, purple, aquamarine, indigo, teal, emerald, apple green + ColorStay Dye Fixative
  • Measuring cup
  • Large metal spoon
  • Plastic buckets or stainless steal sink
  • Plastic gloves & table cover
  • Salt & dishwashing liquid

Thing you need for the headpiece

  • Glue gun
  • Straws
  • Basic headband
  • Scissors
  • Fabric

I may have a lot of colors to start with, but Rit Dye offers a a Color Formula PDF, with 500 different color mixing options. So really you only need a handful of colors for maximum outcome.

The actual skirt needs some basic understanding of pattern making, but not to worry I am going through each step with you as well. 

Step #1 The Skirt Pattern

The skirt is going to be a 3x full circle shape that will make the biggest looker, anytime you spin around. For this step you will need your fabric, some paper, measuring tape, calculator and ruler. 

First we need to figure the diameter of the waist for your skirt, for that you need to measure your waist. Let's go with my measurements to explain the next few steps. My waist is 75cm, which is the circumference. To make our full circle skirt we need to figure out the radius of it, this we get if we divide our circumference by 2*π (pi).

π is a number that also called the Archimedes' constant, a mathematical constant that represents the relationship between the circumference and diameter of a circle. Its value is just under 3.1416.

To make a normal full circle skirt you have to divide your waist circumference by 2*π, if you however want to make a two-full circle skirt or three, you have adjust the formula slightly. Let me show you:

Two-full circle skirt:

r = 1/2 of circumference / 2π

Three-full circle skirt:

r = 1/3 of circumference / 2π

r= 1/3 of 75cm / 2π

r = 3,9cm

Since we want a 3 full-circle skirt, we need to cut out 3 pieces of pattern (three circles) with a radius of 3,9cm. Those three pieces later will be out together at each waist. 

To make each of the three circle, you fold your fabric four times over itself.

Then trace the radius in the bottom corner, and from there the desired length of your skirt. My fabric was 150cm wide so the length is approx. 75cm (folded in half).

 

 

Step #2 Preparing For Dyeing

Now that we have our skirt pattern, divide them into as many section panels as you want. I divided each circle 8 time, leaving me with 24 sections to color. 

Pre-wash your fabric before starting the dying process. 

Step #3 How To Dye your Fabric

Since I had many small pieces to dye, in 24 different colors, I took it in steps of 5 pieces with each round.

You can find general information on how to dye in sinks, buckets, stove top or the laundry machine here.

  1. Cover your working table in plastic or another protective material.
  2. Have hot water at end and fill your bucket so that the fabric can be easily submerged. I used approx. 1l per bucket
  3. If you are dying a cotton fabric, add salt, depending on the weight of your fabric. I added 2 tsp.
  4. Add a splash of dishing washing liquid
  5. Add the dye depending on the weight/ amount of fabric. Make sure to shake the bottle well to get all the pigments! I added 2 tsp - 1/4 cup, depending on mixes. 
  6. Give it all a good stir and put on your gloves.
  7. Submerge your damp fabric (wring it out before) into the color mix.
  8. Make sure that you stir well for the first ten minutes
  9. Leave your fabric in anything from 10-60minutes, stirring regular.

Step #4 Aftercare of your dyed fabric

When you're happy with the color result of your dyed fabric, remove it from the dye bath and squeeze out the excess. Remember that fabrics will appear lighter, when completely dried.

To avoid color bleeding and fading later in the its life cycle, Rit Dye recommends that you use ColorStay Dye Fixative. The solution is mixed with water for the fabric to soak in, for around 20minutes. 

At this point, can we take a moment and appreciate the beauty of those colors?

After I rinsed the dyed fabric pieces from its last bath, I simply hung them to dry and ironed them before working with them further.

Step #5 Assemble your skirt

So this is the part that is really fun! You get to color coordinate all your fabric sections! I went somewhat traditional, from yellow to blue, with all the different shades in between. Did I mention Rit Dye offers a dyeing guide with over 500 shades? 😉

I simply put right side to right side, with each panel, and started sewing the seams back together. At the end I added an elastic waistband.

 

Step #6 Accessorize! 

I thought it'd be fun to have a headpiece too, something that could be 'spun' to point at colors. Remember the game Twister, guys? 

All I needed for this was a hairband, my glue gun, some black fabric and straws, as mentioned above.

  1. First glue three straws together, then two, side by side. Use your glue gun for this.
  2. Cut the top of the three straws into an arrow and half the two by two in the middle, gluing them to the top of the ‘arrow’ head.
  3. Now wrap your headband and the straw arrow with fabric and secure in place with glue.
  4. Attach the arrow to your head band on a desired spot.

     

 Hope you enjoyed this one! I am going to swirl around for a bit now 😉

 

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