Need just the right colored tulle or you're going to die? Simply dye to avoid a dismal demise. Dyeing tulle can give you a custom-colored petticoat for a wedding or formal event, allow you to create colorful tutus for the little darlings in your life or help you to make custom decorations for your next event. While you can buy colored tulle, the options are often limited. With dye, you can create any color you like.
Dyeing in a Top-Load Washer
Prewash your nylon tulle in the washing machine on warm using your usual detergent to remove any finishes, starch or other additives that might interfere with the dye process.
Set your washing machine to the longest, hottest cycle available. Allow the washer to fill with hot water.
Dip the tulle in the water to wet it thoroughly and remove it temporarily.
Put on your gloves. Add between .25 ounces and 3.5 ounces of dye to the washing machine. Use less dye for light colors and substantially more for deep shades -- including reds, dark brown or black. Agitate to mix until the dye has dissolved completely. Return the tulle to the washing machine and agitate for three to five minutes.
Open the washing machine and add 1 cup of white vinegar. Close the washing machine and reset the washer to the longest possible cycle, but avoid allowing it to drain.
Wash using a specialty detergent designed to set dye. After you’ve completed the dyeing process, run your washing machine through an empty cycle to remove any dye residue.
Dyeing on the Stove Top
Prewash your tulle in the washing machine, using your usual laundry detergent.
Add enough hot water to a large stainless steel or enamel pot for the tulle to move freely. Put the pot on the stove and set the heat to medium-low.
Put on your gloves and add to the pot between .33 ounces and .66 ounces of dye per pound of tulle. Stir well with a wooden or plastic spoon.
Wet your tulle thoroughly and add it to the dye pot. Heat to just below boiling, between 185 degrees and 200 degrees. Stir well and add 1/4 cup of white vinegar per pound of tulle.
Maintain the heat for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Rinse well and wash with a dye-setting detergent by hand or machine.
With a master's degree in art history from the University of Missouri-Columbia, Michelle Powell-Smith has been writing professionally for more than a decade. An avid knitter and mother of four, she has written extensively on a wide variety of subjects, including education, test preparation, parenting, crafts and fashion.