This prototype t-shirt was white before being "dyed" with mine drainage sediments from near Shamokin, PA. The shirt is reasonably color-fast; it has been washed five times and has faded very little.
The iron oxide sediments from mine drainage are quite similar to sediments used to make natural pigments. Pigments are inorganic substances that are essentially coat surfaces - paints contain pigments. Dyes are usually organic substances that actually change the color of fabrics. It's somewhat surprising that this t-shirt "dyed" as well as it did because a pigment was used rather than a true dye.
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