‘Tis the season for evening soirees, gathering at home, and dinner parties aplenty—but don’t dump your wine leftovers! You can save that tannin-rich red wine for a fun DIY project. All you need is a stock pot, a pair of tongs, and fabric to dye with—we suggest natural materials like cotton, linen, or wool for best results.
Rinse the fabric you intend to use. You can dye things like dish towels, napkins, tablecloths, tee shirts, aprons...the possibilities are endless!
In a large stock pot, combine all leftover wine. The best part about dyeing with red wine? You don't need a mordant! The naturally occuring tannins in the wine will help adhere the color to your fabric without the need for the extra step of mordanting.
Bring your pot of wine to a low boil.
in the meantime, prep your dampened dye materials. You can give it all over color, rubber band it to create a tie-dye effect, or bundle in a pattern of your choosing. There's no wrong way here, so use your imagination!
Once the wine is boiling, turn off the heat and add your fabric. Leave fabric to soak anywhere from four to 24 hours—the longer it soaks, the richer the color will be.
Remove fabric from the dye bath with tongs, trying to squeeze out as much excess liquid as possible.
Allow fabric to air dry (we suggest hanging above the bath or in the shower to easily rinse any drips!).
Once air dried, wash on a gentle cycle, dry as normal, and there you have it—a fun and simple DIY dye project.