revherup revherup
I have been experimenting with fabric paints to make large banners using all cotton fabric. The first batch came out nice but the colors really faded as they dried. I remember using one of your tie-dye kits years ago so I bought some soda ash to pre-treat the pre-washed new fabric. It does seem that they are drying darker - it could have nothing to do with the soda ash but could be that I applied a heavier application of Dy-na-flow. I wish I had found this website before I used the soda ash because it looks like I didn't need to use it and also it might be better to use dyes. But since I have ... how do I procede now? Should I still heat set the painted material with an iron when it dries and then wash to get the soda ash out - or should I do something else? Thanks for your help
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pburch pburch
Soda ash will not help to set a fabric paint like Dye-na-flow. It's used for helping Procion MX dyes chemically bond to fiber; since paint attaches via a physical rather than chemical bond, adding soda ash is pointless for it.

Dye-na-flow will need to be heat set unless you add Jacquard Airfix to the paint before you use it.

Having already used soda ash, you'd better do your heat-setting before you wash the soda ash out, or the paint will wash out. Is there a chance that the soda ash will scorch on the fabric during heat setting? I don't know. Is Dye-na-flow one of the fabric paints that set well if left alone for a month, even if no heat is applied? I know this is true for non-metallic colors of Setacolor, but am not sure if it might be true for Dye-na-flow as well. If so, the safest course would be just to wait that long.

If your Dye-na-flow colors are not staying dark enough, perhaps you need to let them dry longer before you heat-set and then wash them, or perhaps you need to dilute them less, or apply them more heavily. Just about any colored material, whether paint or dye, will be lighter in color after it dries. Also, it is important, when laundering any garment that has been colored with fabric paint, to turn it inside out first, and wash on a delicate setting, or even in a lingerie-washing bag. Paint sits on the surface of fabric and can be worn off relatively easily if you do not treat it gently.

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