Rainbow Colored Pearls

Nan Salter 2005

   
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Natural pearls come in many colors but not always the exact color you need. We do not recommend this process for real pearls but it works well on the cheap fakes or should I say faux pearls.

General Instructions:

I used Liquid Rit dye straight from the bottle for the most part. I found that if it was diluted too much it would not "take" on the beads.

In a small saucepan on the stove top, cover the Rice beads with Rit, let it just start to simmer, this should take under one minute, remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes. Then pour the beads into a strainer, rinse with water & dry on a paper towel.

Some of the colors were a surprise such as, pure dark Brown which came out gray, so I over dyed them with Tangerine which made them a great copper color. I then reversed that process and while the Tangerine alone was very bright, over dyeing with Dark Brown came out almost the same copper.

The Rice beads are from Craft stores and often come as a "Value Pack."

I did try this with Mother-of-Pearl buttons but unfortunately it did not color those at all.

Tip:
The dye will not work if you dilute it too much. It colors much better used full strength.

A
Rit equal amounts of Kelly green and royal blue mixed 
B
Rit equal amounts of Dark green and Kelly green mixed 
C
Rit pure cocoa brown 
D
Rit pure Kelly green 
E
Rit Royal blue with 1 teaspoon of water 
F
Rit pure purple 
G
Rit Dark brown heated, rinsed and then over dyed with Tangerine (also heated and rinsed) 
H
Rit dark green and yellow mixed equally  
I
Rit Tangerine heated & rinsed then over dyed with dark brown (almost same as the sample to the far right ) 
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