Rust Dyed Fabric - Lampshade

6 Materials
3 Days

A few months back I had great fun playing with rusty nails, bits and pieces of rusty metal found on the beach and fabric. Rust placed on wet fabric gradually dyes rust colours.
The fabric is soaked in a solution of 50:50 water and white vinegar. Rust items are placed into the fabric, where the rust touches the fabric patterns will form. Alternatively you can wrap rust objects with the fabric.
The process can take between 1-3 days for the rust to form.
Having had fun with rusty nails, lumps of metal and washers creating a variety of patterns was then left wondering what to do with the fabric itself. Time passed.

I had a go at embroidering onto the fabric, adding embellishment to the fabric. But then wondered what to do with the embroidered fabric. After some thought I decided to make a lampshade, the back of the embroidery shone through the shade so I chose to work with just the rust fabric.
Using a lampshade making kit found on Amazon I created a lampshade - more detailsfor how to make the lampshade are in my blog post.
I am delighted with the result. If you fancy a go yourself but have no rust objects then you can atill be a go - find out here.
I would love to know what you would make with rust fabric.
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 7 questions
  • Patti
    on Mar 12, 2018

    🤔You do realize you’re going to put all the stain remover companies out of business ... don’t you ?!?! 🙄

  • Patti
    on Mar 12, 2018

    🤔You do realize you’re going to put all the stain remover companies out of business ... don’t you ?!?! 🙄

  • Scafool
    on Jan 28, 2019

    I know rust and tannic acid is used to stain oak wood black and to make a type of black ink. What happens if you rinse the rust stained fabric with tea or another source of tannic acid? Do you get a light tea stain over all and black where it was rusted?

Join the conversation

2 of 92 comments
  • Mary
    on Oct 22, 2019

    Absolutely love this!!!!!

  • Kelly Jo
    on Nov 10, 2019

    I live near the railroad tracks and there are lots of rusty rail ties there. I will have to go scavenging! Thanks for the great idea

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