Friday, August 30, 2013

Fit To Be Tie-Dyed

As part of our fair craft making, I decided to let the kids try their hands at tie-dying. I haven't tie dyed since my Brownie Girl Scout days, let's just say it's been awhile.

We bought a tie dye kit from Amazon and followed the directions carefully. One kit easily dyed our 7 shirts and I think we could have done an additional 3. I don't believe it would have come close to doing 15 adult shirts {per package directions}.  This kit had completely different directions than the method I used as a child. I much prefer this route. I remember boiling and only dying one color at a time. We also received a few pointers from Mrs. Jennifer.

After soaking the shirts in the soda ash, I wrung them out and gave each child their shirt in a disposable foil pan. The directions in the package gave a few folding techniques and I researched some on the Internet. The easiest folds seemed the be the spiral and roll. We wrapped lots of rubber bands around the shirts but they weren't tight, so none of our design came from the rubber bands.

Despite our efforts to make it as "un-messy" as possible we still managed to dye hands, feet, and clothing. Mary Claire didn't even get to make a shirt and still managed to get dye on her dress.

The gloves and smocks did help, but next time I'll set up a table and let everyone pull up a chair. The individual pans were a lifesaver. When we were finished I stacked them all together and dropped them in the outdoor trash can.

The nicest thing about the kit was the squirt bottles. I think it kept most of the kids {Ben excluded ;-)} from getting carried away with the dye. It came with three dye colors {Red, Blue and Yellow} and an empty bottle to mix another color. The kids voted and green was the winning fourth color. Of course, as a homeschooling mom I had to turn the color mixing process into a learning opportunity. In the future I'll have some additional bottles so we might be able to make some more colors.

We took turns passing each bottle around from youngest to oldest. Since I couldn't leave Mary Claire and Liberty out of the fun of matching shirts, I made one for each of them.

After the shirts were dyed to each child's desires, we tied them up tightly in WalMart sacks. The directions said to leave them for 12 - 24 hours. We left ours around 26 hours and unfolded them the next night after supper.

Mrs. Jennifer suggested we hang the shirts in trees to dry. I couldn't reach any of our tree limbs and pregnant ladies have no business on ladders :-), so we hung them in  the shop. I don't plan to wash them before the fair so the colors stay vibrant. Next time we head to the zoo or children's museum, be on the look out for the adorable kids in tie dye. :-)

 Henry's Shirt
 Ben's Shirt

 Griffin's Shirt

 Ty's Shirt
Madisyn's Shirt


  1. Wow! Those came out great! We did that a few years ago at the library and ours didn't turn out so well! Yours look like y'all are pro's (:

  2. I was very pleased with how they turned our! I think the squirt bottles made out lots easier.