How to Tea Dye Lace

Things You'll Need

  • Lace
  • Stainless steel pan
  • Water
  • Tea bags
  • Wooden spoon
  • Disposable gloves

How to Tea Dye Lace. Beautiful lace that has a wonderful aged appearance makes a great statement in any craft or decorating project. Old lace can be expensive and hard to find. Purchase lace by the yard or lace curtain panels in your local discount store and get the same effect for a lot less money.

Wash new lace to remove sizing. Wring fabric out but do not dry.

Fill a large stainless steel pan with water and add 10 family-sized tea bags. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer for 15 minutes. Mash tea bags with a wooden spoon to release more color, being careful not to break the bags. Remove and discard tea bags and let mixture cool completely.

Stir the cooled mixture well. Slowly submerge wet lace in the tea dye liquid. Use the wooden spoon to move the material around to distribute color evenly. Let steep for a while. Check periodically for color depth. When satisfied, remove the material, wring out and dry.

Darken the color if you are still not happy with it after lace is dried. Accomplish this by repeating the process again. Each time the color will be deeper.


  • Give inexpensive lace curtain panels a rich look with this process. Bits of lace used for craft projects also benefit from tea dye. Wear disposable latex gloves to avoid staining hands and finger nails.


  • Do not use aluminum pans or utensils as aluminum reacts to the tannin in tea. Remember it is important to cool the tea dye mixture completely to avoid burns.

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