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It’s kind of embarrassing how easy this was considering it took me at least 3 years to work up the courage to actually do it. Here’s the steps I took to dye our sofa slipcover (though I’m sure there are other ways to do this as well). We bought this Crate & Barrel sofa for an amazing deal on Craigslist about 5 years ago. You can find the slipcovers for it but they cost $700-$900 yikes! This cover was stained, ripped and did I mention stained? Sharpie, food (2 boys and 2 dogs need I say more?)
I went with Rit liquid dye based on what I could get that day. This was one of those projects you all of the sudden get the courage to do so Amazon wasn’t going to work fast enough for me 😉 Here in Phoenix Joann’s, Michaels and Fry’s came through for me (I had to visit several stores). My first dye bath was with 2 Pearl Grey and 1 Jet Black. Here are the steps I took:
- Wash covers completely – leave wet. (I didn’t let it go through the full spin cycle so that it didn’t create creases.)
- Use Rit color remover according to package. For me I did 2 loads – 1 with all cushion covers and 1 with the back cover using 3 packages in each load on extra large again leaving wet.
- Fill washer up with hot water (making sure the fabric can move freely) and add dye to the water along with 1 cup of salt dissolved in about 4 cups of hot water.
- Add covers to washer and agitate for 40 minutes. I set a timer to go off every 10 minutes so I could start the “heavy” cycle over since my washer didn’t have a timer. Once the 40 minutes were over I let it run through the complete cycle with extra rinse.
- Wash covers with laundry soap and extra rinse again.
- Dry most of the way in the dryer and put on the cushions when slightly damp to avoid wrinkles.
This first bath didn’t get as deep and dark as I wanted. I also noticed how very blue it was. I could have decided to add some tan in to warm it up some more but I decided to just go with the blue. You can still see some stripes in this one which made me decide to go ahead with another dye bath.
This time I used 2 blacks and 1 grey per load and I let it soak for 50 minutes (as well as then finishing that cycle) so a bit longer than the first time.
I really am happy with the way it turned out. We’re still testing it out for color stay and bleeding properties but haven’t had any issues yet and there’s been a very light tan blanket on it from the boys most of the time and haven’t had any issues.
Here’s an iPhone photo in different lighting which takes out some of the blue
Either way it saved this sofa for a little while and for a LOT less money than buying a new slipcover.
Tips: Check on the washer to make sure everything is submerged and moving freely, if you need to move anything around use gloves. Rinse well a couple of times if you want to just make sure! Rit also makes a color stay product so once I decide if I’m going to attempt to change the color or this or not I’ll probably use that. Also make sure you know what material your fabric is – this one was canvas(cotton).
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