One of the things on our summer bucket list that I was most excited about doing with the girls was tie dying. I’ve really been loving the indigo dyed trend that’s been going on for a little while and wanted to give that a go instead of your traditional brightly colored tie dye. I ordered this kit off of amazon and got a bunch of muslin and white pillow cases to dye. I wanted to use the pillow cases on our bed and make the girls a dress or skirt with the fabric. These cloth napkins would be awesome to use as well. Wouldn’t your table be so cute with dyed napkins?
I am not going to get into super detailed instructions because the kit comes with them but here are some pictures from our process.
1. Gather all your materials. Read instructions. Mix dye. It needs to sit for at least an hour (I think) before you use it. The indigo dye is so much cooler than just a regular rit dye. When you first dye the fabric it’s green until the air oxidizes it.
2. I did a lot of pinterest looking to see how best to fold and tie fabric. There are lots of techniques out there and really you can’t go wrong (this was super helpful). I found that the best way to get results is to stick with some type of accordion fold with the fabric and then use popsicle sticks and/or elastics to bind it all up. The girls had a lot of fun (and it really kept them entrained for quite a while) folding the fabric and using the elastics. Of course I had to go back and make sure everything was tight enough to actually work with the dye but for the most part they created their own designs.
3. You’ll notice an oily looking top layer with a yellow-greenish colored liquid below. This is when you know the dye is ready. You need to soak all your knotted and bound fabric in clean water first before you submerge in dye. This is a great job for your little ones to do.
4. Once everything is soaked you can submerge into the dye. This part I did myself only because I had one pair of gloves but otherwise I would have let Rowan help as well. When you put the fabric into the dye you sort of massage it around a bit, making sure the dye seeps all the way into the center of the bound fabric. Keep submerged, working the fabric for about 5 mins.
5. Again, when you first bring out the fabric it will be this neon green color. As it sits in the air it will turn that deep indigo color. It’s really cool to watch. The girls loved that part, they thought it was magic! You can repeat the dye process if you want a deeper darker color.
6. Let the fabric sit for at least 20 mins and oxidize in the air. Then you can open it up and hang it up to dry. Some parts of the inside may still be green when you open it but it will turn blue very quickly. You can wait till it drys completely or you can throw it into the wash partially wet. Wash on cold with a gentle detergent. Hang to dry.
7. If you dyed fabric try using this tutorial to make the easiest and cutest skirt for your little ones.