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How to Dye Sun-Faded Cotton Drapes

Constantly bombarded by sunlight, cotton drapes will quickly lose their lustre and colour. As the sun beats down on fabric, it can fade and discolour the cotton curtains. There is no quick fix for sun-faded drapes. However, before you toss them in the nearest garbage can try restoring the look of the sun-faded cotton drapes with dye. DIY dye is available in a wide array of colours for a relatively inexpensive price tag.

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  1. Launder the sun-faded drapes as you normally would. This will remove any surface dirt, and dust present on the cotton fabric.

  2. Read the directions, and warnings printed on the specific brand of fabric dye you are using. Each brand of dye will have its own set of specific instructions. Put on a pair of rubber gloves

  3. Dilute the dye with the appropriate water as stated on the package instructions. Use a large tub, sink or bucket to mix the dye and water in. The container needs to be big enough to fit the drapes in. Stir the dye, and water together with your gloved hand.

  4. Place the sun-faded cotton drapes in the diluted dye, and submerge them completely. Move the drapes in a back-and-forth and up-and-down motion until you have covered the drapes in the dye.

  5. Let the sun-faded drapes to soak for 10 to 30 minutes. Each brand of dye will have its own soaking time. Refer to the dye's instructions for the appropriate time frame for your brand of fabric dye.

  6. Drain the coloured water from the tub, sink or bucket, and rinse the drapes with cold running water. Continue rinsing until the water running off the drapes is clear.

  7. Wash the cotton drapes in cool water with 1/4 cup of washing powder. Dry the drapes as you normally would.

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Things You'll Need

  • Washing powder
  • Fabric dye
  • Rubber gloves

About the Author

Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.

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