A few weeks ago, my bud Rachel from Handmade Charlotte came over to introduce me to a new kind of dye that can be brushed (or dipped) onto all kinds of surfaces (wood, cork, woven baskets, natural fiber textiles, etc) to create bold, vibrant colors.
It’s called FolkArt Ultra Dye and I have to say, with all the dyeing projects I do around here, I was really curious to try out a product that I had yet to hear about. And now that I’ve had some time to play around with it, and really love it, I’ve actually partnered with Ultra Dye to share some behind the scenes of the DIY projects that Rachel and I came up with (along with an awesome team) at the studio.
Click through for all the behind the scenes photos…
DIY Dipped Wood Accessories
I love dip dyeing projects, so to start things off, we dipped a bunch of small wood items that I’ve been meaning to do something with.
We sanded down any rough areas that needed extra attention, gave the bottle a good shake and poured the Ultra Dye into small (but semi deep) containers. We dipped the wood pieces directly into the dye, just like you would with paint. Then we set them aside to dry and moved onto another project until they were ready to use.
You’ll see in the finished photos that the color is SUPER vibrant, but also still lets the wood grain shine through, which I really liked. And now I use the ring holders and dishes for small jewelry items and office supplies around the studio.
DIY ‘Watercolor Effect’ Weaving Project
This DIY was the most involved of the three, but still very easy to complete. We drilled holes into a long piece of sturdy wood and taped off a woven-inspired design.
Next, we got the wood surface slightly damp with a paint brush, then brushed the Ultra Dye on over the damp wood surface, for a more pastel watercolor effect. I’d recommend using the Ultra Dye Brush Pack for painting – the soft Taklon brushes help ensure smooth application and are great for creating a gradient effect.
We tested out some colors with the damp wood method ahead of time on scrap wood, to decide which colors we liked best, which I would recommend. Once dry, we removed the tape and strung handmade pom pom tassels through the drilled holes, along with a string for the top to hang from. Done!
I think this one would be cute for a kid’s room or even as a b-day party craft for kids (as long as the holes are drilled ahead of time).
DIY Fruit Paintings
This one brought me back to when I was a kid in school, always making crafts with random household items. I love working with food as a material for crafting. And all these years later, it turns out you can actually make some pretty fun abstract artwork with a handful of fruit and veggies.
We used celery, apples, sweet potatoes, lemons, cucumbers, and pears and then painted the Ultra Dye directly onto the fruit and veggies (the celery leaves were dipped instead), before pressing them down like stamps onto a piece of wood. This one was really fun to play around with – it worked great for stamping and the colors and shapes turned out so much clearer / more vibrant than a stamp pad would have.
Photography by Michelle Norris
So those are the projects Rachel and I worked on. It was such a fun day…always nice to craft with friends. Don’t you think? Which project is your favorite? Think you’ll give Ultra Dye a try?
For more colorful inspiration and DIY ideas, be sure to follow Plaid (the awesome company that makes Ultra Dye + a ton of other craft products you know and love) on Instagram and Facebook.
This post is in partnership with Plaid Crafts. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Paper & Stitch running.
6 comments | Click here to reply
Hi Kathy. If you click over to the Ultra Dye website you should find the answers to your questions regarding what the product can and can’t do. Hope that helps.Brittni
A friend sent me a link to this, knowing that I am a fabric dyer and painter of fabric. Your samples here are on wood…is this a product for use on fabric, too? If so, does it require special treatment to be washfast and does it change the hand of the fabric significantly? Can’t really tell what the project with the pom poms was supposed to be and were the sticks just your color sample pieces. I’m always looking for new products that might make my artistic life easier!Kathy Schmidt
Hi Gemma. Yep, they look exactly the same when dry. Super vibrant!Brittni
Ohhhh those dipped wooden shapes look incredible!! I love the colours, were they as richly bold once it dried?
Thanks Michelle. It was a fun little project.Brittni
The weaving project looks so interesting, I would love to see the outcome!Michelle