Shibori Dyed Velvet Pillow Covers

February 1 2018

Shibori dyed pillow covers is one of our favorite ways to update home décor. They are so incredibly easy to do but they look sophisticated and much more challenging than they actually are. We found some great velvet pillow covers at H & M for a steal. We love how the velvet texture steps up the traditional shibori look.

  • Velvet Pillow Covers
  • Evening Blue All Purpose Liquid Dye
  • Black All Purpose Liquid Dye
  • ColorStay Dye Fixative
  • Office Clips
  • Bucket
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Measuring Cup
  • Large Metal Spoon
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  1. Cover table with plastic. Gather supplies.
  2. Prewash pillow covers with detergent, rinse and leave wet.
  3. To get the traditional shibori look, folding tightly is key. For this folding pattern, we did a simple “fan fold” down the length of the pillow. Vary the size and width of your folds to get more pattern variations. You can even fold into triangle shapes for a different look. 
  4. Once the fan fold going down the length of the pillow case is complete, fold the pillow case width-wise to end up with a perfect square of fabric. 
  5. Secure the folds tightly. For a more contemporary technique, we secured the pillow cover with binder clips. You can also use clamps and wood blocks which is more traditional. Dye will have a harder time getting to the folded fabric which creates the white space in shibori design. 
  6. Set aside folded pillow cases to prepare the dyebath.
  7. To prepare dyebath: Fill large dye container with 3 gallons very hot tap water (140F). If water is not hot enough, heat some water in a cook pot or teapot. Shake dye bottles before pouring and wear rubber gloves when measuring dye. 
    For a dark Indigo shade, add ½ cup Denim Blue dye and approximately 2 tablespoons Navy dye to hot water. For a softer shade, use ½ cup Evening Blue. Stir well.
  8. Test the dye color by dipping a paper towel into the dyebath. If color is too light, add more dye; if color is too dark, add more water.
  9. Immerse your pillow cover into your dye bath. The pillow cases can sit in the dye bath anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes (longer time equals darker dye results). When you achieve the color you are going for, remove the pillow cover and rinse it in cool, running water to remove any excess dye that didn’t work it’s way into the fabric fibers. 
  10. Undo all of the clips and rinse again until water runs almost clear of dye.
  11. Wash the pillow cover with like colors or an old towel to make sure all traces of excess dye are gone.
  12. Dry and enjoy! 
  13. Pro-tip: Using Rit ColorStay Dye Fixative right after dyeing and before rinsing really keeps your colors vibrant and keep that color bright for a long time.
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