Sun Powered

I’ve had a stash of Lumi’s Inkodye for a few months now, but finally got all the materials together to use it about a week ago. It’s pretty amazing! I’m still experimenting with it, but the process has been a lot of fun.

Step 1: Have something that you want to print. I went with some whales I painted a few weeks ago.

ImageStep 2: Print out your image on a transparency. This is where I got a little hung up, as I had to buy new ink cartridges and find the right kind of transparency for my printer. The transparencies should be printed with the black and white inversed, like a film negative.

Step 3: Put some Inkodye on your fabric! But not too much. Just enough to get the fabric damp and cover the area you want covered.

Step 4: Place your transparency on top of the fabric, and get that baby out in the sun! The fabric will start changing almost instantly.




The blue started to appear after about a minute. I have my fabric and transparency sandwiched between two pieces of plexiglass and held together with bulldog clips, so there’s no way for things to accidentally shift during the exposure time.

Step 5: Wait. Seriously, wait. It’ll take about 15 minutes to get the strongest color. I brought a chair and book outside to keep myself busy.



Step 6: When you can’t stand it any longer, bring your fabric back inside to a place where sunlight can’t reach it, take off the transparency, and start rinsing. I ended up having to wash my fabric by hand for a few minutes, then run it through the wash twice to get all the leftover dye out. Which is something you really want to do, unless you’re cool with your fabric turning blue when you take it outside.

Step 7: Be proud! You made something cool!



I made one for myself, and a few for Etsy. I’ve gotta say, they’re great for small grocery store runs.

15 thoughts on “Sun Powered”

  1. I like this and hope you sell many. Keep up the good work.

    Dana Guidera
    Author of “Seven Poems from Life”


  2. The end result is brilliant. I really love your original whale art work too. I recently carved a whale Lino block so I’m in a whale kind of mood. Great work.


  3. I love this! thanks for all the information and the easy to follow illustrated steps you make it seem easy! Can I ask are are all the supplies expensive? and how long start to finish?


    1. Nah, the supplies aren’t very expensive, and a few things I already had, like a brush to apply the ink and tupperware to put it in. The ink and soap to wash it out were about $8 for 4 oz. of each, the plexiglass pieces were $25 (although you could totally get away with just one and a big firm piece of cardboard though), and I bought the tote bags wholesale for about $2 each. I started around 11am, printed three bags, and had them in the wash by 1pm or so. It doesn’t take long at all. Please let me know if you have any other questions! 🙂


      1. Omg you just blew my mind i though this happened over the course of a whole day and was really out of my budget.but this is doable for me thank you im really inspired to try with my artwork now!!


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