Erslev Dyed in the Bathtub

Materials: Erslev Rug, Bleach, Rit Dye, stencil, fabric paint, stencil brush

Description: The Erslev rug functioned well in its original green for a while, but when we changed up our daughter’s room, it wasn’t quite right. I knew I wanted a golden yellow rug, but we didn’t have it in the budget, so we used what we had!

Step 1:
Bleach the rug overnight. I used 1/2 gallon of bleach in 1/2 tub of water for bleaching.

Step 2:
Rinse (and rinse, and rinse, and rinse)

Step 3:
Hang the rug to (mostly) dry. (I used the shower curtain rod for this)

Step 4:
Run HOT water in the bathtub (put on your rubber gloves for this step!), and pour in your Rit Dye. I used two packs of Golden Yellow and 1/2 pack of Cocoa Brown to get the color I wanted. In hindsight, I wish that I had mixed the colors with a little water before pouring into the tub…I think it would have mixed a lot easier.

Step 5:
Submerge your (mostly) dry rug in the dye solution. A damp fabric will take color better than a dry one. You should only need 2 inches of water for this – only enough to barely cover the rug. Constantly rotate the rug so that you can ensure that every square inch gets dyed. The package instructions say that after 10-30 minutes you should have your desired hue…mine only took 5. (Disclaimer: You should test the color on your tub before doing a full dye)

Step 6:
Rinse (and rinse, and rinse, and rinse) until no more color comes out of the rug when you rinse it.

Step 7:
Put your rug in the clothes dryer (so that the color doesn’t drip all over the floor/bathtub when you hang it to dry).

Step 8:
While your rug is in the dryer, BLEACH your bathtub. Do it fast. And scrub. My favorite trick is to use the bleach gel toilet bowl cleaner in the tub – squeeze it all around the inside perimeter of the tub where the dye was and let it sit for a while before scrubbing.

Step 9:
After about an hour, hang the rug up to dry the rest of the way.

TaDa! You are now the proud new owner of a bathtub-dyed Erslev rug!

After my newly-dyed rug was dry, I used white fabric paint and a stencil to make a fleur-de-lis pattern all over. I love the way it turned out, and it looks way better in her room than the plain green did!

See more of the Erslev dyed and stencilled rug.

~ Kendra, PA

Jules Yap