Monday, July 27, 2015

Dyed Galaxy Ergo Baby Carrier

I got this Galaxy Ergo for super cheap on ebay because it had a few stains and was old and worn. Still in great condition for carrying a baby and a great dye blank!  I tried to find some information about how to dye this carrier but couldn't really find a good tutorial, so I decided I would document everything I did and write my step-by-step instructions for other people. I am currently wearing my 11 day old baby in the finished dyed Ergo while I type this post!
Here is the carrier before I dyed it, complete with stains.

I started by mixing a little more than 1 cup of soda ash with a gallon or so of water. You will come to find in this tutorial that I rarely measure anything out. I just wing it. It's not rocket science.  I have this big canning pot just for my chemicals. If you don't have one of these, you can use a clean cooler, bucket, stainless steel sink, etc.  I use my canning pot and I re-use my soda ash until the water is either too dirty or gone.

I rolled up all of the loose straps and unbuckled everything so I would have extra stuff flopping around. I left my carrier in the soda ash solution for approximately an hour.

I also wore my galaxy leggings for color and placement inspiration.

Here is my setup for dyeing. It's a cheap plastic bin, some tall beer cans, and some cooling racks.  Very professional. I clean the grates and the inside walls of the bin each time I dye something.

*wearing gloves* Ring out the carrier as much as you can so you don't waste precious soda ash, then put it in the washing machine on a spin cycle to get the excess moisture out.
 I mixed 4 colors. I used Dharma Procion MX dyes and I mix them about 1/2 of a tsp per cup or so of water. I just mix them in my jars or squirt bottles.  I already had the green and fuchsia mixed up (green is turquoise and lemon yellow mixed in even amounts, but I ended up not using any green at all). From left to right: Jet black, Jet black, green, fuchsia, turquoise, and the last jar is a dark purple. To make that color, I mixed 1/4 tsp of fuchsia, 1/4 tsp of turquoise, and 1/8 or so tsp of black. Always mix dyes with cold water. (also, this didn't use near as much dye as I thought it would, so I still have some of every color but fuchsia mixed and ready to dye something else. Dyes keep quite well as long as it's cool where you store them.

I laid the carrier loosely in the bin. It didn't really matter how because I maneuvered it a lot while I was slinging the dye on.

I started with the lightest color, fuchsia. I just put it on in random spots.
After I was "done" with the outside of the carrier, I flipped it over and put some pink on the back side as well so the whole carrier had dye.

...then the turquoise, again on both sides

.... then the purple

... and last the black. The black was the most fun because I just shook it all over the carrier.

I placed the carrier carefully into a black trash bag and flattened it out as best I could, then took the bag outside to batch for 24 hours in the heat of our Oklahoma summer. this was about 3:00 on Saturday, so it would be ready for me to rinse out after lunch on Sunday.

Sunday after lunch and a short nap, I opened the black trash bag and saved it to use for trash and started rinsing. I have a utility sink in my back yard that isn't hooked up to anything and I just use the garden hose to rinse my dye jobs. This one took a LOT of rinsing. I think I was rinsing this for at least 30-40 minutes. Just like dyeing your hair, you want to keep rinsing until the water runs clear.

I took the carrier inside and put it in the washing machine with a drop of blue dawn dish soap and my homemade laundry detergent (ingredients: grandpa's patchouli soap, borax, super washing soda, tea tree oil, and water), set it to wash a small load on hot, with extra power rinse.

I hung it outside to dry.

 I could not wait to get that carrier inside and put my tiny little boy in it. I have a borrowed infant insert and he fits perfectly. I may paint more stars on it or do something decorative on the hood, but I really love the way it turned out and I'm not sure it needs anything else. I also got my 3 year old in it on my back but he wasn't dressed appropriately for public pictures, so these are my only action shots for now.

Happy upcycling!

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