How to Make Painted Lace
by Cindy Losekamp
Lace is romantic, but painting it with multicolored dyes can make it sophisticated, fun, or wild, as well. Dyeing lace trim with a paintbrush opens a kaleidoscope of possibilities-color depth, precise application, and artistic blended effects-not possible with dip-dyeing. And it's an easy way to create a beautiful, unique detail for garments and accessories.
You can paint lace of nearly any fiber using the proper dyes, but lace made from rayon-especially Venise lace-takes color much better than any other. Rayon Venise lace trims have a wonderfully fluid hand and come in many designs and widths. Their heavier, satin-stitched motifs also provide substantial surfaces for you to paint with colors.
I use a kit of seven color dyes specially formulated for lace, and the colors can be mixed to expand the basic palette. Dye bonds to the fibers without changing the lace's hand or feel, unlike most paints. Other good fabric dye options include Rit and Jacquard's I-Dye and I-Dye Poly.
Use beautiful dyed lace trim to embellish anything you wish-garments, purses, frames, shoes, pillows, curtains, or even a pair of sweet anklets. You can also cut the dyed lace apart to use as appliqué or to create unique jewelry.
• Bottle dropper caps or eyedropper (the tip of a toothpick or spoon also works)
• Fine-mist spray bottle
• Old towels or paper towels
• Small dish, divided plastic plate, or other sectioned container
• Sumi-e or other paintbrush (FabricAndArt.com)
• Waterproof dropcloth or large plastic bag
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