Vegetable dyed tablecloths

I had a width of fabric and an afternoon to be creative with the kids before having friends over for dinner. We had just been to the local farmer’s market and came home overflowing with the late summer vegetable harvest. It seemed the perfect time to try our hand at natural vegetable dying. We used a mixture of beets and red onions to get this pretty coloring. It was great fun experimenting with a new creative process together.

Using vegetables to dye fabric is easy once you get the hang of it. It is a great project to get the kids involved with, they will love seeing which vegetables produce which colors. Plus, you don’t have to be super precise about the process. Just add in your favorites and have fun.

Here are my not-so-technical directions. Boil a large pot of water. Slice and dice your veggies, then puree in a blender. Add the puree along with cuttings from the vegetables into the pot and simmer for about an hour. In the meantime dredge the fabric in white vinegar (this helps the dye to adhere). Take the vegetable dyed water off the stove and place it in a large bucket adding in the fabric to dye. Let the fabric rest in the dye for 10-30 minutes, depending on how deep you’d like the color. Hang dry and enjoy!

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Posted August 16, 2012
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7 Responses to “Vegetable dyed tablecloths”

  1. Jillian says:

    Is the color permanent or will it fade a lot after it gets washed?

  2. PSbyDila.com says:

    What an amazing blog you have! So inspiring. I’m following!

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  4. sallie kate says:

    What fun! Seems like your fabric would be a little stinky :)

  5. [...] We all have a tablecloth or two that have wine stains or thanksgiving turkey grease on them. You know the one. You wash the tablecloth and it’s ruined so you only use it when it’s just yourself or close friends who don’t care. Here’s a way to fix the problem. You can dye tablecloths with vegetables. The result is very pretty. [via a Subtle Revelry] [...]

  6. This is so beautiful! We eat a lot of beets, and when I see the beautiful colour in the water I always wonder what it would be liked used as a dye. Now I can give it a try!!! Great post. Thank you :-)