Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Umm... This Could Be Bad

So, we have this couch.


It's a lovely little Ikea pull-out couch that has served us well for both seating and accommodating out-of-town guests. The thing about this couch, though, is that it's slip-covered. Cool, you say, that means you can wash it. No dice. It's dry clean only, and the one time I took it to get it dry cleaned they called me later and told me they wouldn't do it because they were afraid of the liability of ruining my couch. I tried to convince them it was just a slip cover and it would be all right. They didn't believe me. They must have thought I was trying to angle my way into a ridiculous law suit or something.

Well, as you probably noticed the couch is off-white. And I have a 2 year old.

So, not the best mix. It has been looking pretty shabby, so I thought we'd better replace it.
Not the best picture, but it does illustrate some of the shabbiness. The cushions were starting to look grey in places.

Then I got to thinking about changing the color palette of my living room (I get bored, it's a major failing) - and I found this color scheme of grey and green in Traditional Home magazine and just fell in love. So I started researching cost for a new, grey slipcover and found out it was going to cost around 200$. Yikes. So I thought, maybe I should try a few things with one we have first. That's when I got the crazy idea to dye my slipcover grey.

"What happened to dry-clean only?!" you're asking, I know. Well, I thought if we're going to just replace it anyway, I might take the risk of ruining it. And that's just what I did.

Yeah. See that? It looks like... well, it looks bad. Images of gelatinous man-eating goo keep popping into my head. That's after a very failed attempt to dye the slipcover in a plastic tub on the back deck. Oh snap. And as I was watching the horror unfold before my eyes, I got a call about our car needing new tires AND a new battery. So, basically, we have no money, so this is our couch cover for a while, whether it's hideous or not.

This story may yet have a happy ending, though. I decided I was not going to give up so easily (it would be so awful to have to put that cover back on my couch), took a deep breath and went back to Joann's for more dye. $12.00 later, I'm retrying the experiment - this time in the washing machine and with twice as much dye divided into three batches. I just checked on batch number one and it is looking much more hopeful - it's at least evenly dyed, and coming close to the color I wanted. Now I just have to let it all line-dry and hope nothing shrunk. That "Do Not Wash!" admonition still has me on edge.

Here's hoping I end up with something better than this:

Have you ever tried dying anything? How did it go? Happy stories? I need some encouragement... but commiseration would also suffice.


M.C. Sommers said...

Oh I hope this turns out! I have faith it will. Have you read the young house love post about this? I think their experiment failed on the first try, too. But then I think it worked. I can't really remember. I knew I was too chicken to ever try dying something!

Stephanie-jean Life:SemiCrunchy said...

Car troubles always seem to slip in right when you think you are OK to do something on the verge of insane ;)

Allison said...

Wait, you didn't want a tie-dyed couch. That's like the coolest thing ever =)

Shirley said...

I hope it turns out good! Fingers crossed for you!

Heidi said...

you and I have to talk again tomorrow - I have been reading a ton about spray painting/painting furniture instead of die...also, I have a website where you can buy a new slip cover for $30! chat soon!

Kristal said...

Good luck! Hope it can be fixed..and on a side note, I am green with envy looking at your chairs! Did you get those from a neighbor? I thought I saw them a couple of months ago sitting out on a driveway and thought they were the cutest thing!

Charity said...

Kristal, I know! I totally fell in love with those chairs - I got em f0r 10$ each from Sis Newby (I think that's her name - Burns's mom). I only wish they weren't ripped. I actually quite love the color, but they are going to have to be reupholstered or covered in some way :(


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