2013-12-26

Saving a shirt

I had an old white dress shirt that had 2 burn marks on it from overheating in a dryer. I liked the shirt, made of a relatively thick cotton/poly blend with a tougher weave than you usually see in dress shirts, but it was no longer usable as a dress shirt. Jess and I were chatting one day and realized I could save it by just dying it. So, today, finally did it!

This is RIT black.... yes, that's what I said, black. I love the color it came out, but whatever it is it definitely is NOT black. I followed the directions pretty carefully. I used half a bottle of RIT in a 5-gallon bucket filled maybe a quarter of the way with hot water (just a touch hotter than tap water, right at the edge of burning my hands), and a 1/2 cup of salt. Stir constantly for 45 minutes. Next I rinsed the shirt out with warm water until the water was running near clear (not actually clear, I got bored). Then I ran it through a washing machine with a little soap and salt.

The only funny thing is I think the shirt shrank just a tiny bit. I'd swear this shirt used to fit perfectly and now it's just a tiny bit tight. Still, it's good enough and now the shirt is usable again as a general wear shirt, or even a casual dress shirt. We'll see how colorfast it is.

So, assuming it lasts I'd call this a success. This was my first ever dying project, as in general I don't care much what my clothing looks like. But the white stains to easily. So, now I can keep the shirt presentable much more easily. Why throw things away, when you can reuse them.

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