Friday, March 30, 2012

Tee Time!

By Gerry Wendel, GR Founder and Team Member

Preparation: It takes about three minutes (per tee) to properly fold each t-shirt and rubber band it.

The mixing of the magic colors: This time it’s blue, green, teal, and purple. Dye, salt, and hot water are thoroughly stirred together. The six small buckets could hold three to five t-shirts each. Placing them initially in the dye is easy, but gloves went on first; who needs lime green fingers?

Keeping track of the time involved a lot of clock watching. When you have six buckets of t-shirts “cooking” at once, you can easily lose track of the timing for each one!

Next step was carefully pulling the t-shirts out of the dye without unraveling them, then gently squeezing excess dye out, finding space in a bucket with a different color and pushing the yet to-be-dyed other half of the t-shirt in.

As shirts completed the colorization process they're moved along to a holding area to cool off after which they were laid out or hung out in the sun and rinsed thoroughly.

Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. The process of dying, holding, and rinsing took six hours. I admit that I took a little break to check on the Groovy Reflections page and to have some trail mix and a diet ginger ale. I also sat down for a short while; the middle of my back was not very happy with me!

Drying in the sun.
One little snag: Not enough places outdoors to lay out or hang shirts. So the dryer had to help. It was starting to get dark outside and leaving the shirts out overnight was not an option; so in the dryer some went!

Ready for ironing!

And now the ironing has commenced. Ironing also sets the color and the shirts look great when they’re pressed.

My favorite part of the process? Taking the rubber bands off the just dyed and cooled off tees and unfolding them. It’s like finding a surprise inside each time, almost like those little prizes in a Cracker Jacks box that caused you to shove your hand into the box to get it all that sooner.

Here's just some of the finished products!

"Self-Portrait" via phone!

Okay, I admit it. I picked one out for me!

And here's one of my faves below. All have a heavy dose of Peace and Love in them. And plenty of GRooviness too.

For more info on these GRoovy tees, just visit the Groovy Reflections website by clicking here.


Anonymous said...

These are so cool! What a painstaking process - thank you! I love my tie dyed Groovy Reflections shirt and will be ordering more! Tim


Gerry, These shirts look like Groovy Magic Shirts - Handmade Wearable Art - Made with ❀☮Ⓛⓞⓥⓔ☮❀ ❀^._.^.•*¨*•.¸¸¸¸.·´ ᏰᏋคมᏖἶ∱มໄ

Elvira Scaff said...

That is so cool Gerry, I am going to see if I can try to dye some shirts my favorite shirt was a tye dyed Smiley Face one :) I loved that shirt.