Coloring Acrylic and Modacrylic based furs.
One of the toughest things to do is to dye synthetic fabric! You can use
fabric dye such as Rit, but you will get a dull pastel of the color you want (i.e. black
will come out gray).
It's been suggested that one use an airbrush to color the fur, this
works quite well on shorter pile furs but doesn't do you much good on thick longer pile
Here's what I came up with, it's rather time consuming but works rather
||First you need some fur, I wanted to use Monterey Fabric's Fox #379 on a project, but it
only comes in either white or a brownish color and I needed it to be black so....
Starting with black Rit fabric dye I dunked and
stirred the fur in the solution using water that was as hot as I could get it from the tap. I did
this for the recommended 30min then rinsed the fur and allowed it to dry. This gave the
fur a nice gray color.
||Next came the fun part. Using some water based acrylic fabric paint I
diluted 8oz. of paint in 5 gallons of water.
||Once again stirring the fur in the mixture for 15min or so, then
carefully wringing the solution out. Be careful not to wring out too much as your
actually wringing out the paint as well, also try to do this as evenly as you can to avoid
streaking. the first coat won't do much, however you will notice the fur becoming
after drying, this means your on the right track..
||When drying use of a blow dryer works well, I used a shop vac with the
hose on the exhaust, worked much better than my blow dryer. DON'T use a clothes dryer or
you'll end up getting the insides all painted and probably ruin the dryer!
||You MUST comb the fur every 10 min or so or the fur will mat together
and will be really hard to comb out! I used one of those Slicker combs available
department or pet store, works really great!
||Here's the fur after the second dunking with a small piece
of Rit dyed
fur and a piece of the original for reference.
||Here's how the fur looked after the fourth dunking, getting closer but
still has a lot of lighter colored streaks throughout.
||And here we have the finished product, this is after 6 dunking. At
this point the fur will be really sticky to the touch, to get around that I soaked the fur
in a washtub of fabric softener after waiting the recommended 72 hours for the paint to
set. I used a rather heavy concentration of fabric softener, rinsing the fur twice before
getting rid of the sticky feel.
And there you have it, it took close to a week to get this piece
I wanted it, as I said it is a really time consuming task but the results speak for
One other thing I noticed is that if you really dilute the fabric paint
you end up with a really cool under fur effect, if you comb back this piece of fur you'll
see the roots of the fur are much lighter, giving it a more realistic look!