Welcome to my blog about things I love to collect, refinishing furniture and decorating using flea market finds (with a few crochet projects now and then).Thanks so much for visiting!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Dying Bottle Brush Trees

 It's really easy to do and very addicting!
I found that I love the natural color of the bottle brush trees most of all but it is fun to have a few colorful trees.

I did a little winter decorating with a few natural trees, vintage tinsel garland and mercury glass ornaments. I love the old postcard of the children playing in the snow. 

I did not take pictures as I dyed these because it's so easy to do.
Below are the results.

Please be aware that every single tree comes out completely different so don't plan to get the same result twice. Just have fun with the surprises you get.

I used Rit dye for the pink trees (Petal Pink formerly Rose Pink). I LOVE the pink trees!

First off I tried the Rit Aquamarine on the tree on the far right and was disappointed in how it turned out, plus for some reason all the 'snow' came off so it will need some glitter. 

I found out that I liked the bluish color far better as the trees bleached rather than dying them. Funny thing is, they ended up the same color as the Aquamarine dye anyway. Possibly a lighter blue dye would have been a better choice....next time!

Bleaching and removing trees as they lighten; use about 50% bleach and 50% water in the smallest container that will fit the tree(s) (do not use for food). Push the tree down so that it is entirely covered and watch as it fades. Using tongs, pull out the tree as soon as you like the color...not all trees bleach the same so grab the trees that you like and and leave the rest in the bleach solution ...the longer they bleach the lighter they become and are better for dying pink or pastel colors. They bleach out quickly using this much bleach!

Rinse under water and plop into fresh water with a glug of vinegar, rinse again and set aside.

Dying the pink, I used about 1/8 package of the dry dye and about 1 Cup of water. (This is for the smallest size trees....you will need to increase this for larger trees). Heat in a saucepan that you do not use for food and be sure the dye has completely dissolved. Warm dye solution is fine.

When you have a tree ready to dye, use the tongs and be quick about it...drop the tree in the dye but pull it out after only a few seconds. The tree will take up the dye very quickly. Keep dipping the tree into the dye until you get the color you like. Set aside to dry.

I discovered that the trees take up the dye a lot quicker if they are still wet from the bleaching process. Don't handle the trees harshly if you want the 'snow' to remain on them.

Try any color but if you want the softer pastel shades use the trees that bleach out to be a light cream.

The 'green' trees can be found in craft stores such as JoAnns, Michaels and Hobby Lobby.

I'd love to see what you do!!!

Pictures of bleaching info HERE

Thanks for stopping by...and Happy Thanksgiving!

Linking to:
Faded Charm for White Wednesday
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday
Brambleberry Cottage for Time Travel Thursday
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home
My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
2825 for Potpourri Friday


  1. Love the pink ones. My favorites are the creamy white ones though.

  2. Your trees are gorgeous! I finally found some at Walmart! =)


  3. I love your trees! Thanks for such a great tutorial! I also love your blog! Your posts are so inspiring!

  4. Love your trees ... I've been doing a lot with bottle brush trees this year, as well as wreaths. Just love the look.

  5. Nice vignette with the brush bottle trees!
    Happy Thanskgiving!

  6. You are so welcome Faye:-) I needed some more trees to bleach, but cannot find any anywhere....oh my!!!

    Btw, I loved your post about your Dad....very special indeed:-)


  7. I'll be bleaching my trees this weekend! Have been anxious to try since your first post on the process!
    LOVE your little arrangement under the bell jar.
    Have a great Thanksgiving, Faye!!!

  8. These look so pretty!
    My to do list is growing!

  9. I saw your gorgeous display at White Wednesday--WOW!!! How beautiful and so are your trees--Happy Thanksgiving!!

  10. Found you featured at Faded Charm...I love your stuff! I'm following, I hope you'll come check out the FARMHOUSE PORCH!


  11. Thanks so much for the bleaching tips, Faye! I'd been thinking about trying this myself. I really took to the bleached trees last year, but this year I finally bought one. I do think it would be fun to do one up myself though. Yours look really pretty and I'm liking the pink ones!

    Visiting from WUW! : )

  12. I love bottle brush trees and just bought some old ones at the antique mall. They can get quite pricey. I need to find some cheap ones at a store somewhere. Love the colors you changed these too.

  13. SO pretty! These are definitely on my "to do" list -- thanks for the tips on dying them!

  14. I never thought to dye them. I just bleached a bunch of them. As soon as my turkey has digested, Im off to the market for some RIT. Thanks for the idea. Happy Thanksgiving.

  15. Just found your lovely blog.....I am now following you :)


  16. Thanks so much for the tips on bottle brush trees! I`ll have to try it!
    Have a Blessed Thanksgiving~

  17. Hi Faye...just wanted to pop in again and say congrats on your feature over at White Wednesday!


  18. I love your cloche vignette, Faye! I bleached a bunch of bottle brush trees several years ago and created an entire tablescape with them for my Christmas Day celebration. Everyone loved it. Now those trees are some of my favorite Christmas. ;)

    I would love to have you share your lovely display at my Time Travel Thursday linky party this week.

    Liz @ The Brambleberry Cottage

  19. Oh, I love these. Found you at Feathered Nest. Now a follower.

  20. Love it! I'm going to have to give this a try this year. Unless I procrastinate too long, which I'm known to do. Wish me luck!

  21. These are adorable! I love how they look, and the colors look great. I am partial to the vintage white ones, they look amazing under your cloche.


  22. I love the little vignettes! These trees are so sweet, I love the vintage feel of the cloche look.

    Lucky 7 Design

  23. I love bottle brush trees! Thanks for sharing how to bleach and dye them.
    ~ Julie

  24. Thanks for sharing this very sweet project. It never would have dawned on me that the trees could be bleached. I guess because I'm very busy. When I'm working on ideas for my boutique flower shop windows I don't give myself enough time to explore my ideas. Just come up with an idea quickly and do it.

  25. Love the color of the trees, specially love your vignette.
    Thanks for sharing.

  26. The bleached trees are adorable, Faye! And they look so nice in the cloche vignette!

    Thank you for sharing this idea and your lovely post at Potpourri Friday!

  27. Thanks for sharing the tutorial, Faye...I'm really looking forward to trying it!

  28. What a great Tutorial... I'm having Bottlebrush Tree Love this Season and found some Vintage ones in the perfect Sepia Shade I was seeking... but this idea of yours makes the new ones look Vintage and I might try my hand at it.

    Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

  29. Very nice! Thank you for joining me at Home Sweet Home!

  30. Your display is wonderful. The cloche just ties it all together and makes it extra special. I appreciated knowing about dying the trees. I still have to try bleaching. Then, I'll think about dying. Thanks for sharing.

  31. Just wanted you to know I featured your bottle brush bleaching technique on my blog this weekend and I'm your newest follower!! Happy Holidays!!

  32. Awesome!! I love the bottle brush trees. Thanks for the dying help!


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