Thursday, February 24, 2011

Recycling A Discarded Wedding Gown

The bride left this gown with a friend 3 years ago.  The friend kept asking her what she should do with it.  Did she want it?  Finally, the bride said, "Just get rid of it!"    I saw it on freecycle, wrote stating why I wanted it = to use the material.  After a couple of weeks, when no one else responded [she really wanted someone to use it as a wedding dress], she gave it to me.   

Now some facts and questions.   The material is a heavy polyester satin, lining is polyester, and the tulle is nylon.  I will not be using the tulle.  I intend to take the gown apart and use the pieces.   It is a size 28, so there is LOTS of material.   I would like to dye the fabric.   Any suggestions on what dye to use.  I have never dyed before. However, I would really like to do shibori IF it is not too difficult. I want to use this to create a jacket [or cape] to wear to an April plus a dinner-dance in September for my 50th high school reunion.  Any and all suggestions welcomed.

Back of Gown showing staining on front

Bottom of Gown showing some of the mud stains


Caren Kristine said...

Wow! I have my mom's wedding dress and have used it for several projects. Can you dye non natural fabrics?! I know the nylon tulle won't dye. At least is won't absorb paint or tea. I don't do true dying.

Michigoose said...

The bodice looks kind of neat, I wonder if you could make something along the lines of it, but of course much smaller.

I think, but won't sear to it, that Rit dye and perhaps Dylon dyes work on poly. I can't believe that the woman wanted it to be used as a wedding dress given the heavy staining.

SusanPI said...

I have no idea about the dye - but I love your idea! Wow I would never have thought of using a wedding dress to make a jacket. I look forward to seeing the finished

Karen said...

I do not know anything about dyeing the fabrics in your wedding gown but would suggest Dharma for great info. I have bought several wedding gowns to recycle. I have a front loading washer and I put them in on cold and wash without any problems. I have gotten similar stains out this way without damage. The ones I have washed have even included heavy beading. I can't wait to see what you do with it.

Cynthia St Charles said...

You are not going to be able to dye it easily since it is synthetic fabric. You could use fabric paints. I have done some very nice pieces with Setacolor transparent paints on synthetic satin. I think a shibori technique could be done with the paints quite successfully. It can be challenging to paint an entire garment so I would suggest you paint it before sewing the pieces together. You can email me if you have more questions. Or look in the archives in my blog. I have some satin pieces there you could look at.

Anonymous said...

Polyester satin looks dynamite with transfer printing using Transperse Dyes from Pro Chem, for example. NAYY. You paint it on paper, cut the paper into whatever shapes and iron it onto the fabric. Overlap it, paint interesting designs. Lots of fun. The papers can be used repeatedly. You need to play! And don't forget to use your parchment to protect your board and your iron.