Sunday, January 10, 2010


I have a bra that I hate, but because I hate to throw away perfectly good bras (darn things aren't cheap), I decided maybe I could modify it enough to turn it into a steampunk dance bra.

The first step, though, would have to be changing the color. It's that hideous peachy fleshy beige-y tone that only a bra could be. There's no pretending it's any sort of outerwear when it's that color. My first thought was to tea-dye it, and a quick Google search revealed that tea-dyeing is so easy that I really had no excuse not to try it right away. So I brewed up some cheap tea, snipped off part of the bra, and went on my merry way.

Of course, this bra isn't just hideous, it's also synthetic. The tea dyed it, but only to a slightly darker, still fleshy tone. Drat.

I'm now examining my options... I could try dying it with coffee, which supposedly makes a deeper brown. I could try making some Kool-Aid dye (Grape + Orange = brown sludge, right?). I could apparently use Lumiere paints (I found directions for using them to paint/dye bathing suits). I could use Rit dye. I could cover it with more attractive cloth. Or I could say that this is all a lot of work for a bra I don't really like anyway, and go down to Target to buy a white cotton bra that would take better to tea-dyeing.

And that is the story of what I did this weekend. I played with my bra. What did you do?


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  2. This weekend I finished up my color report projects and will be mailing them off today.

    Tomorrow I start modifying some costumes. Oh joy! I love the beading aspect of it, but not too crazy about sewing.

    How about you? Do you like to sew?

    *I deleted my first due to excessive use of typos.*

  3. I don't think the KoolAid will work- I'm pretty sure it only dyes natural fabrics. Honestly, I'm not even sure how well you can use food dyes (tea, koolaid, food coloring, etc) a bra that's entirely cotton; I think you can only do really well if a material came from hair of some sort (like when I dye wool yarn with KoolAid and how you can dye hair with it, too). I'd say your best bet is probably painting this bra.

    If you had a white bra that was entirely cotton, you could possibly tea stain it, but if it's a non-white or synthetic, your options are more limited.

  4. SaraBeth, what sort of costume stuff are you working on this week? I haven't learned how to use my sewing machines yet, but I don't mind a little hand-sewing. I plan to learn to use my machines this year, I really want to make myself some cute Turkish vests to wear over my bras!

    Meri, I'm worried that the Kool-Aid would give it a permanent fruity smell. But I think you can use tea to dye cotton, because you can get tea-dyed cotton muslin at the fabric store. Silk and wool do take veggie dyes better, though.

    I'm really thinking of doing the paint, because then I can just paint the outside, and not worry about dye leaching out of the lining and giving me colorful boobs.

  5. Well, did you ask Chris? He might like colorful boobs!

    I have a dark violet and silver beledi dress that needs a bit of tweaking, reposition bra straps, take in at the waist, piddly little things.

    Off to get ready for 4+ hours of dance!

  6. Chris's opinion doesn't count, the boobs aren't attached to HIS body ;)

    That Beledi dress sounds really pretty. There's a sparkly green one at Plaza de Anaya that I want, but I'm on a tight costume budget for a few months, unless I suddenly sell a ton of jewelry.

    4+ hours of dance?!? Wow! I am impressed by your stamina. Have fun!

  7. You can definitely dye cotton with foodstuffs -- that's one of the ways clothes were dyed centuries ago -- but if you have to buy a new bra to do it, do you really want to? Maybe the paint is the best idea.

    BTW, apparently there's a Facebook group for telling the color of your bra.

  8. Well, the benefit to buying a new bra is that I could possibly get one that's more comfortable than this one, and it would be the tea-color I like. The benefit of sticking with this bra is that I already have it, and it will go to waste otherwise, because I already cut the clasp off to use as a test-swatch for dyeing.

    That Facebook bra thing is really annoying me, talking about the color of your bra does not raise cancer awareness.

  9. I don't need much in the way of stamina right now. Since Ava has several new students and some of the regulars stopped attending class during the holidays she's taking it easy on us, for now. But next month?....Scary!!!

    Troupe rehearsal is 2 1/2 hours, but right now we are blocking and cleaning choreographies which quite a bit of standing around.

    Good luck with the bra!

  10. Well, then, maybe folks who come by will consider joining the Army of Women. This is a clearinghouse for breast cancer studies all over the country.

    I haven't had cancer, but my mother died of breast cancer. In the last year (first year of the group), there were two studies I qualified for, but they were in California and I'm in Virginia. But if they ever get a study close enough that I qualify for, I'll enlist.

  11. SaraBeth, it's nice that she takes it slow for the newbies :)

    Marilee, I think that's a much better way to raise awareness and actually do something.