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Topic: My very own dye shop?!  (Read 1101 times)
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kaitlin
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« on: September 24, 2007 03:17:31 PM »

I've just been given permission to turn my in-laws laundry room into my very own yarn dye shop (and I'm probably going to throw a spinning wheel in there somewhere, too!)

Does anyone have any tips on what to put in there, and what to avoid? In addition to the washer and dryer, it has a big white plastic sink basin, which I'm thinking of switching out for a metal one. Necessary?

Also, because this is probably going to be dying on a grand scale, do you think I should panel the wall behind the sink with something? If I tiled it, I'd be worried about the grout changing colors on me :/

I get the whole room to do with what I will, what do you think would be practical to throw in there?

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« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2007 11:29:41 AM »

How good is the ventilation in the room?
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kaitlin
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« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2007 03:29:51 PM »

There's a window, which could be opened in a pinch..
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« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2007 08:24:07 AM »

When using professional dyes you should alway be in a well ventillated room, so I would buy a window box fan for exhaust.

Also you will need a heat source of some kind like a gas cooker or hot plate.

You will need a selection of dye pots, stainless steel or glass are best.

Lots and lots of latex gloves, dyes can be caustic and you don't want to touch them.

I would invest in a drying rack to hang your dyed objects off of and drop clothes because some dyes can even stain tile.

For a backsplash go to home depot and buy a large plexiglass pannel to block the wall because you will dye the wall (trust me I have.)

You will want lots and lots of storage containers for dye mixes and perhaps a small refrigerator to keep natural dye baths in (they tend to grow mold if left at room temperature.)

Dust masks are a must, you don't want to inhale acid dyes or any mordants they are not great for the respiratory system.

A microwave would be good as would a pressure cooker. In fact I think the presure cooker is the best thing to get for dying.

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magpie0816
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2007 05:46:41 PM »

I would be afraid a metal sink would react somehow with the dye you would be using...but I have no clue if that is true.
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« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2007 06:54:10 AM »

If its stainless steel then she is okay, but if it seems to be any other metal she should replace it.
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fiberartist219
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2007 07:21:39 PM »

A plastic sink is fine. Also, don't worry about dyeing the grout. If you need to, you can bleach it later. I have stained everything in my bathroom, but as long as everything is white, bleaching takes it right out.

Of course, you'd want to be mindful of health risks... I agree that you should pay attention to ventilation and respirators. They are really important when dealing with dye powders. You should really look into a quality respirator rather than just a dust mask if you're going to do it all the time.

Anyway, I'm really jealous! I want a laundry room to dye in. I currently do all of my dyeing out of a small bathroom... and some things I carry down my hallway into another room to be microwaved. I dearly love my dye microwave. (Of course, it isn't used for food... hopefully if you're going pro, you know that.)
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« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2008 10:34:10 AM »

tables, storage bins, and a clothesline (if you don't have one outside). I have 3-4 tables at any given time for spreading out all of the stuff I am working on and I keep those rolling plastic drawers in various sizes close to ma at all times. Go check out goodwill or another second hand store and you can fin cheap cheap cheap tables and storage to cover in dye!
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« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2008 09:46:02 PM »

It depends on the type of dyes you use as to what you need, and how big you mean by production.  If I were truly going for production I would probably use large propane tanks and burners outside under a covered area (because of ventilation), which would allow me to use larger pots than I can on a stove (I can't lift anything larger than a  canning pot full of water, and even that I am not *supposed* to lift). 

Depending on the type of dyes you use, the type of pots (all the same material if you are trying to replicate colors...) will also be important, as will whether or not you mordant- my yarns and fibers have to sit for awhile after mordanting to cure, so that takes up space, for example.

Lots of rags.  Deep and tall shelves.  Fans.  Full mask.  Elbow length gloves (Reusable preferably!) , long poles for stirring and lifting.  Skein winder, scale.

I dye in my kitchen (no space for an outdoor propane tank, and again- I can't lift the larger pots.  Someday though!), so in addition to open windows there is a powerful fan above the stove.  A pantry and another closet hold much of the gear when not in use.  My fridge is largely fiber related for dyes and things being mordanted.  Same for the washer (good for spinning out yarn).  A drying rack lives in my bathtub, and is easily moved out (not allowed to hang things outside on my balcony).  My kitchen island is nice and large, so works well for production, with a nice big double sink in the middle of it.  It sounds like a lot of walking back and forth, but it's an open floor plan so it is really all right next to each other!
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