Dyeing with Alcohol Inks

Pat Winter © 2008

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The other day I was on the phone with a stitching friend, Jill Phillips, and she asked me if I had any black lace appliqués. As I was looking, she said perhaps she could dye some she had. I told her that I have tried a few black dyes and it is hard to get a true black color. Then she mentioned Ranger Adirondack Alcohol Inks. I have colored fabric images, brass charms, silk, and glass with them before with success but never thought to dye laces with them. She tried it while on the phone and it worked. I thought it was worth passing on to you.

It is a bit pricey, so you wouldn’t want this to be your main dye method. However, in a pinch, Alcohol Ink is a great dye. It is acid free, so it won’t disturb your fabric. I used it last night to dye an appliqué because I was in the studio sewing and was too lazy to go downstairs and get out the dyes just to paint one appliqué. The results were very pleasing. Nice vivid color and it dried so fast and is permanent. Below are my results from dyeing with Alcohol Ink.

Butterfly appliqué was dyed with a small brush, and then a sponge applicator with the color “Latte” was lightly brushed over wings for an aged appearance.

White Moiré fabric with a machine embroidered design was dyed with Alcohol Ink without disturbing the thread colors from embroidery.

Completed block.

Fabric image was painted with Alcohol Ink to blend with image and color the white border.

Alcohol Ink can be painted over Inkjet Print without blurring. You may dilute with the blending solution and mix colors easily.


Ranger Adirondack Alcohol Ink can be purchased at fabric, hobby and craft stores as well as online at www.rangerink.com.

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