Ice Dyeing Time!

In its pristine simplicity, ice opens a door for majestic imaginings.

ice cubes

I seem to have a fascination with ice ever since our trip to Antarctica. Is it any surprise that I have latched on to ice dyeing?

A few weeks ago, I started to plan a piece for the Taiwan Art Quilt Society’s Call for Entries. I knew exactly what I wanted for the background for my prospective piece – some ice-dyed organza. Unfortunately, I did not have enough left from my previous summer’s ice-dying play. I needed to try and recreate a similar effect.

I do not do a lot of dyeing but I have found ice-dyeing to be simple, quick, and fun. It is easy for me to set up on a work space in our garage:

work space for ice dyeing

After preparing your fabric of choice, the process can be as simple as layering fabric in a glass container with ice cubes sprinkled with powdered dye and leaving the mixture for 24 hours. For details on the process, Carol Ludington has a great article entitled ‘Dye Your Own Ice Parfait’ in the June/July 2012 issue of Quilting Arts Magazine

I neglected to photograph my containers this time but here is photo from last year. Since I am dyeing relatively small pieces, glass jars and bowls are sufficient for my purpose.

glass ice dyeing containers

I was looking for some ‘forest feeling’ organza so this year I focused upon some dark to medium green dyes that I had used previously. After I rinsed my organza the following day and surveyed the results I was pleased.

fabric-3 fabric2 fabric-1

The art work that some of these pieces will be used in is still a WIP. Hope to be able to have it in a stage where I can share it in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I hope this inspires you to get out some ice and fabric and play a little!

PS Linking to Off the Wall Friday so you can check in on some other artists.

Back to main


  1. What fun you are having. Love the results… I see more wonderful quilts in the future!

  2. These are really beautiful fabrics. I am sure they will contribute to stunning quilts.

  3. Absolutely gorgeous results! I’m wanting some of that organza….

  4. I am just not brave enough to sprinkle the powder on… your results are wonderful. LeeAnna

  5. fascinating post Judy and the results are so very appealing and unique.

Leave a Reply to Jenny K. Lyon Cancel reply