Aug 112009

Well, there it is. My first attempt at dying a gi. Honestly, I didn’t do that great a job. I was very hopeful, after having seen Georgette’s awesome kimonos. But, still, despite some flaws, I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. I learned some things that lead me to believe that my next try will go a lot better.

As you can see in the picture above, the patches and the red thread didn’t take the dye. Overall, it turned out really well. The only problem is some red bleeding from something. I think it was the red cord on the trousers, but it could also have been my club patches.

I purchased the materials from Dharma Trading online. I spent a total of ab out $39.00 plus about $10 to ship it. I received the shipment inless than a week. I still have 3 colors that I can use to dye more kimonos, as well as plenty of soda ash, detergent and fabric softener. Basically, the cost is a little over $10 per kimono.

After dying it, I washed it on super hot, “sanitary” wash and dried it completely in the dryer. As you can see, it shrunk. I’m comfortable wearing it, but it’s a little small now, to be honest. This is going to vary from gi to gi, but the SYR is a little small for competition now. I am going to get a Gameness Pearl that I’m sure won’t shrink like that, hopefully for my next try.

I think it’s cool how the patches took the gray where they were white, but otherwise made it through the dying process intact.

There’s where the red was the worst. I also didn’t do a great job agitating the sleeves and ended up with some streaking. I’ll be more aware of that next time.

The pants turned out great.

Overall, it was fun to do, and not all that hard. I am going to do something a little different next time around. I think the next one will be either “sage green” or “pewter”. I also got Navy Blue, which I think will be really cool on the right gi.

There’s also a process called “Batik” that I’m interested in.

 Posted by at 7:41 pm

  8 Responses to “Dying my BJJ Gi”

Comments (8)

    Looks sweet! Good work sir :)


    Steve, that looks AWESOME! I can't wait to hear what you think about the sage green and the navy… I have sage green dye but haven't used it yet. You did a great job. :)


    Heheh, I'm all for the creative vibe. Nice gi.


    Hi Steve – Nice job!

    Garment dying is an art form. I used to work as a production planner for a garment manufacturing company. We would make the garments and then send the greige goods to the dye house. Certain colors are harder to dye than others. If it was cotton dye, the red thread may be poly and would not take the dye.


    Thanks for the feedback, guys! Overall, I'm happy with the end result, although it's definitely far from perfect.

    Michele, the dye staying red was a happy accident. The only real let down was the bleeding of red from somewhere… I think from the rope tie on the pants. It got all over and is pretty noticeable. I can see that it's not as easy as it looks.

    Georgette, I don't think that it looks quite as good as yours. I got some streaking on the sleeves, but as I said in the post, I think I can do a better job next time.

    Meerkat, I've seen your artsy side many times on your blog. You do good work! :)

    Adam, thanks! BTW, I was sure to take several pictures in my awesome Conceptual BJJ shirt while we were on vacation at disneyland… but can't find the SD card those pics are on. My factory BJJ shirt is in my son's closet now… a little small for me.


    Yeah gray is sick, generic and good looknig still. I want to get a seahawk's color


    btw what patch is that?
    did it come with the gi or is that the one your friend's mom put on for you?


    Vincent, that's from the manufacturer. ShoYoRoll made that gi.

    Thanks for stopping by. Hawks colors would actually be pretty badass.

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