As you know, wearing tie-dye shirts is a fashion trend that always comes back in style. But, you don’t have to buy a brand new shirt because you can turn your old clothes into something you can wear again. In fact, making your own tie-dye shirt is a fun do-it-yourself (DIY) project. You can even come up with your own design for a unique look. So, how can you make your own tie-dye shirts at home?
How to Make Tie-Dye Shirts Using Food Coloring
1. The first step in making a tie-dye shirt is to choose a fabric. For this project, we will use a classic white shirt. Because food coloring is an acid-base dye, it is recommended to use a polyester fabric instead of cotton or linen.
2. The next step is to combine two cups of white vinegar with two cups of water. Keep in mind that vinegar has an unpleasant odor, so it is best to make your tie-dye shirt outdoors.
3. Once you’ve made the vinegar and water solution, you can now soak the white shirt in the solution for one hour. In doing this, you have to make sure that all the parts of the shirt are covered with the solution. If some parts start to float, you can weigh the cloth down with a jar. After an hour, wring the fabric.
4. Afterward, the next step is to crumple the shirt. Remember, to create a tie-dye pattern, you need to crumple the fabric into a ball. To ensure that the ball is tight, you can use wrap rubber bands around the ball.
5. Next is to pick one or two colors. Keep in mind that using three or more colors will result in a mud-like color, which will look unpleasant. If you want the best results you can use two colors, like red and yellow or blue and pink.
6. Fill a 120 ml water bottle with water and add eight drops of food coloring. If you want to use two colors, you need to use two water bottles. Afterward, shake the bottle with water and dye, then create a small hole on the plastic cap of the water bottle.
7. Once the dye solution is ready, you can now apply the dye to the crumpled ball, and make sure that all the sides are dyed. Before doing this step, you have to make sure that you’re wearing gloves to avoid staining your hands. You can also place the crumpled ball on top of a trap or newspaper to avoid staining the ground.
8. After applying the food coloring, the next step is to place the crumpled ball in a plastic bag. Leave the shirt in the bag for about eight hours so that the food coloring can set properly.
9. After eight hours, you can now remove the crumpled ball out of the plastic bag and unravel the rubber bands. From there, soak the dyed shirt in a solution of 150g salt and 120 ml water. After a few mins of soaking, wash the dyed shirt with fresh water.
10. Finally, the last step to make tie-dye shirts is to hang the dyed shirt until it is dry. Remember, when washing the newly dyed shirt, it is best to wash it separately for three weeks to avoid transferring the dye to your other clothes.
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