Sunday, 10 February 2013

DIY - Tie Dye!

Tie Dye has been one of those things I've always wanted to have a go at but never actually got round to doing it, but this time I actually did it!
The other day me and my friend Joe decided to grab a bunch of dyes and a few white T-Shirts and have a try, I decided to take a few photos along the way so I could create a little guide incase any of you were looking at trying it out but needed a little bit of help.

What you need -
- T Shirts (Or whatever you want to dye)
- Dye
- Elastic Bands
- Bottles with some sort of nozzle
- Bucket
- Water
- Newspaper or bin bags (Optional, used to protect the surface while mixing dye)
- Gloves

Step 1)
Grab whatever you want to tie dye, the lighter the colour garment then the brighter the dye will be, however, there's no harm in grabbing a few coloured shirts and having a little experiment! You could always try bleaching the garment first to remove a bit of the colour.
In this case I decided to grab a few plain white T-Shirts from Primark for £2.50, I didn't want to start on anything more expensive as it's something I'd never done before, plus the basics from Primark are normally pretty descent for the price.

Step 2)
I was using Dylon die, so from now on the instructions were according to what the packet gave us. I had to wash or soak the T-Shirts for a bit at first, I'm guessing to remove the dirt or if there's any chemicals left on the fabric, but that could be a total lie and I've just convinced myself!

Step 3)
Now add the dye to warm water and stir it a few times to help dissolve the leftover powder, then mix together water and 250g of salt, finally mix the two together to make the dye. Repeat this a few times or till you've mixed up all the different sachets of dye. 

Step 4)
Once the dye was made I then poured it into separate bottles and labeled them. For the bottles I actually used some empty washing up liquid containers as they had a little nozzle on the top, although in the end I then had 9 empty bottles and a spare 4.5 litres of washing up liquid. 
Maybe not the best idea I've ever had!

Step 5)
Take the damp shirts and tie them with elastic bands in whatever pattern you want to achieve. For this I'd just google tie dye patterns or something similar, there's literally hundreds and I just went for a few that seemed to be the easiest as I'd never done it before.

Step 6)
Go outside or anywhere that's easiest to clean, away from anything you care about getting ruined and then start to squirt the dye onto your fabric. 
Be as adventurous or as safe with the colours as you want, remember that with some dyes the colours will mix, so blue and red will make purple, etc.
Maybe don't follow exactly in my footseps as I decided to do this in the afternoon as by the time I started to add dye outside it was pitch black so I had literally no idea what colour I was adding to what bit of my T-Shirt! 
Once you've finished adding colour then simply follow the remainder of the instructions on the back of you're die packet, for me it was just a rinse with cold water and then stick the T-Shirts in for a warm wash!

And there you go, a nice little guide on Tie Dye!
I'd definitely recommend anyone who's been wanting to do this for a while like me, to go ahead and do it. It's so easy and if you grab a few friends too, it can be a laugh. 
I'll keep you updated with how they turn out once the final wash is finished and they've been ironed by doing an outfit post, or something similar.

Good Luck to anyone who is off to give this a go, I hope I helped everyone, feel free to comment and link me to your tie dye'd clothes!


  1. That's so cool! I'm definitely going to try it out myself. Where can I purchase the dyes ?

    1. P.S. In reply to your comment under my post. If you're scared you will ruin your denim jacket try it out of something cheap before (like a t-shirt :) )

    2. Definitely worth it! I got mine from Fenwicks but you can get them from Amazon or Wilkinsons, I think Amazon might be cheaper but I figured that out after.
      Ahh good idea, gonna have to think of other DIY things though, enjoyed it a little too much!

  2. Great post loved reading this as I need to do this for an assessment in my design course but kept putting it of as had no clue on what to do as the instructions where poorly put but this was a great method and looks so fun so really excited to try it out :D great blog x

    1. Ah thankyou!
      Yeah it's really worth a go, I'm going to have another attempt in a few weeks because I want to try a few other ideas, plus try bleaching a few coloured things! x