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How to dye a wedding dress

Updated April 17, 2017

Perhaps you wish your wedding dress to be a less traditional colour for your wedding, or you have already worn it and would like to extend its life. It is possible to dye your wedding gown the colour of your choice from the comfort of your home. By using this dyeing technique, you can save money on the dyeing process and avoid having to buy an entirely new dress in your desired colour. The perfect shade of colour for your wedding dress awaits you.

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  1. Weigh your wedding dress on a digital scale.

  2. Buy 28.4 g (1 oz) of RIT Dye in the colour of your choice for every 454 g (1 lb) of dress you have. If you are going from a very light colour to a very dark colour or vice versa, additional dye may be needed.

  3. Run water in your sink. Once it gets as hot as possible, plug the sink and fill it about 7.5 cm (3 inches) below the top. The heat is what creates a successful dyeing job. The hotter the water, the better the dye is absorbed into your fabric. A temperature of 60 degrees and 82 degrees Celsius (140 degrees and 180 degrees Fahrenheit) is recommended. If your dress does not fit in your sink, do this step in your bath.

  4. Add the bottle(s) of RIT Dye to your water and stir thoroughly. Use a large, plastic or metal spoon. Do not add the dress yet.

  5. Wet your dress with hot water in a different sink or bath (not in the dye).

  6. Soak your wet dress in the dye-filled sink or bath.

  7. Stir your dress in the dye-filled water for 25 minutes without stopping. Use a large, plastic or metal spoon.

  8. Remove the wedding dress from the dye-filled water and rinse it in warm water. Once it has fully rinsed in warm water, begin to rinse in progressively cooler water.

  9. Rinse the dress in cold water until the water running from it appears clear.

  10. Hang the dress on a plastic or wooden hanger and place a bucket underneath. Wait for it to fully air dry. This is likely to take overnight.

  11. Scrub your sink or bath with hot, soapy water and a rag to remove any possible stains.

  12. Warning

    RIT Dye warns that it is "not for use on dry clean only fabrics." It is still possible to dye your dry-clean-only fabrics successfully, but proceed at your own risk.

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Things You'll Need

  • Digital scale
  • RIT Dye -- 28.4 g (1 oz) per 454 g (1 lb) of dress
  • Water
  • Sink or bath
  • Large, plastic or metal spoon
  • Plastic or wooden hanger
  • Bucket
  • Soapy water
  • Rag

About the Author

Sarah Mollman

Sarah Mollman began writing for "The Northern Iowan" newspaper in 2005. She was awarded scholarships from the Department of English at the University of Northern Iowa for Outstanding Short Story and Outstanding Personal Essay in 2008. Mollman holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Teaching from the University of Northern Iowa.

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