I have been playing with dye the last couple of days. One of my groups posted a link to a video about using RIT dye to color glass pearls. I just knew I wanted to try it. They have a custom color chart that is too dye for ( get it? to dye for.. sorry, couldn't resist).
I made really luscious colors of coral, marine blue, aqua blue ( got darker than I wanted) and caramel. I love how the chocolate brown pearls turned out...!
In my first experiments I cut the glass pearls off the plastic string they come on and used cheese cloth to dip them, then I got smart and left them on the string and used a bead stopper to keep the pearls I didn't want to dye away. That was a much better technique.
I did try to dye a couple of cheap freshwater pearls I had laying around....and strangely enough, they didn't dye, I don't what kind of dye is used on freshwater pearls. Not that I think Pearl farmers use RIT dye. Fire Mountain Gems also has a tutorial for dyeing freshwater pearls. I am guessing I just didn't leave them long enough.
If you'd like to try to make custom colors for your jewelry, this is something you should try. I ended up dipping my pearls for about a minute to get some intense colors, but you can play and get the depth that you would like. I can't wait to get some more glass pearls to play with. Check out the video link and see for yourself how easy it can be...!