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Reviving Husband’s trousers

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That’s a bit of an odd title, isn’t it?  Husband is quite tall and hard on his clothes, so we have to invest in high-quality trousers for him.  While the trousers do last, they tend to fade after a few years of frequent washing.  If the trousers are still sound, i.e. no holes or weak spots, I’ve found that I can revive them by dying them a darker shade than the original.  In the case of navy and black, I can also dye them the original colors.

To do this, I just follow the instructions on the dye, dumping it into the machine with a punch of salt.  After the cloth has been dyed, I immediately wash the trousers again with detergent.  Then, after that, I wipe down the seals and the inside of the machine, and run it again on a full cycle with detergent, but no clothes.  I’ve never had a problem with residual dye using this method.

Here are a few things I’ve discovered –

The thread may not dye to the same color as the cloth, and it may not dye it all, depending on what it is made out of.  This does not have to be a disaster, and many times it has added an interesting effect.

Different parts of the cloth may dye differently, depending on how it was treated and how worn it is.  If this happens, I ask Husband what he thinks.  Sometimes he likes the effect, sometimes not.

You can’t get away from the fact that the pocket lining will also take the dye, so if, for some reason, the wearer of the trousers is self-conscious about not having white-lined pockets, dying is not an option.

Finally, a packet of dye is relatively inexpensive, especially compared to the price of trousers.  If the dye doesn’t work, then I’m only out the cost of the dye.  If it does work, and it has many more times than not, then I’ve saved myself the price of a pair of trousers.


About Kara

I am what happens when you combine a WWII enthusiast, an environmentalist and a frugal celiac/coeliac.

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