Tie-Dye T-Shirts

Materials

  • White Shirts or other objects to dye – 100% cotton white shirts work best
  • Tie Dye Kit
  • Rubber bands-you’ll need between 2-8 per shirt
  • Gloves – latex gloves work the best
  • Plastic bags – at least one per shirt plus one large trash bag to hold all of the shirts.
  • Wire Cooling Racks

Preparation

Pre-wash your shirts and leave them damp from the washing machine. Fold and rubber band your shirts as desired (some examples of folding techniques and instructions are below). When finished folding, mix up the bottles of dye.

Note: the dye will only remain at 100% strength for one hour after mixing, so do not mix up your dye until you’re ready to use them! The best place to dye shirts is in a large utility sink or bathtub. Place wire racks on the bottom so that the shirts don’t sit in the puddle of excess dye and muddy the colours. Squirt the dye onto the shirts (make sure that the dye gets down inside the folds for best coverage!), let the excess dye drip off for a minute, and then wrap the shirt tightly in a plastic bag.

Quickly rinse the sink/tub between each shirt to wash the dye down the drain and avoid staining. When all the shirts have been dyed and wrapped in plastic bags, place the bags into a larger plastic bag and set them somewhere warm for 24 hours. It’s important to let the dye have that time and heat to penetrate the fibres and stay vibrant! After 24 hours, carefully cut off the rubber bands and rinse the excess dye from the shirts with cold water.There will still be a small amount of excess dye left after the rinse in the sink, so toss the shirts into the washing machine for a light wash and rinse cycle to make sure that all of the remaining dye is removed. Finish by drying on high heat to further set the colours.

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