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tried to remove a stain from a "dry clean only" red dress that
you've only worn once or twice. Unfortunately, you also removed
some of the surrounding color from the fabric. A friend suggested
that you might be able to save the dress by dyeing it, say,
Here's the bad news: You probably couldn't save the dress by
dying it black. Here's why ...
First, garment dyeing is a highly inexact mixture of art and
science. There are many variables to be considered and the final
result cannot be predicted with any degree of certainty.
Second, your expectation that the red silk dress will be
magically transformed into a like-new, black silk dress is
unrealistic. More likely than not, you'll be very disappointed with
the results. The garment will probably be unwearable, and you've
just spent a lot of money to prove it.
Here's some of the problems you'll encounter:
Shrinkage and Loss of Texture
Dyeing is a water-based process involving heat. Shrinkage is
always a risk. And the garment may lose some of the "hand" or feel
typically associated with silks.
There's a good reason the garment manufacturer put a "dry clean
only" label in that green silk dress.
The overall color of the garment may be inconsistent, blotchy or
streaky. Especially in the area of the stain or color loss -- the
very area you're trying to "fix".
You cannot select the exact color you want, nor can the dyer
predict the final color that might be achieved. For example, if you
asked for black, you might get dark gray or navy.
Many natural fiber garments, such as your red silk dress, have
synthetic fiber components such as polyester or nylon thread and a
nylon zipper. These synthetic components will not "take" the dye.
So you could end up with a black (or dark gray or navy) silk dress
with red seams, red button holes and a red zipper. What's more, if
all the primary components (fabric and thread) were silk, the
fabric and thread may end up different shades of the same
So what's my overall advice about dyeing?
Don't waste your time or your money.
How can I help you?
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