Thrifty Thursday: DIY tie dye


Tie dye: those days in primary school when you were allowed go crazy for a few hours and create a multi-coloured masterpiece. But we all know that tie dye is a regular contender both on the high street and on the catwalk, so why leave all the fun to the designers? Get back in touch with your inner child and make yourself a cool tie dye top, skirt, pair of socks… Anything!

What you will need:

you will need

  • A pale coloured top. White might seem like the obvious option, but you could always go for a pale pink with some purple dye!
  • Rubber bands.
  • A pack of hand-use dye. You can get sachets of dyes in all different colours off the internet for about £2. Make sure it is hand-use dye, not machine-use.
  • 250g salt – strange, I know, but it is used to set the dye.
  • A bucket – to put the water and dye in.
  • Rubber gloves – to keep your hands the right colour.

1. Get your dye ready to go. Instructions will vary depending on the specific dye you use (I used Dylon). Roughly, you will have to  dissolve your dye in a jug of warm water, then transfer it to a large bowl of warm water (about 6 litres) and add the salt.


2. Get your garment ready to go. Make sure that the piece of clothing that you are using is made of cotton – dye will come out at its brightest and best on this material. First, wash your item well and leave it damp. Next, you need to decide what patten you want to come out on your item. I went for a smudge-effect, which basically involves scrunching up the garment into a ball and placing rubber bands around it in a random patten.


To create horizontal stripes, scrunch your item into a straight line and place the rubber bands parallel to each other along the garment.


There are loads of different effects you can try, and the beauty of tie dye is that you can experiment all you like!

3. Soak your garment in the dye. When you are happy with the placement of your rubber bands, submerge your garment in the dye and leave it for about an hour, prodding it occasionally. Have a cup of tea and watch the telly while you wait for your creation to take shape …


4. Take off the rubber bands and leave it to dry …

5. … and get creative! Play around with cutting your top up into different styles to make it exactly how you want it!

maybe 2

Voilà! Your tie dye creation is complete! Who said arts and crafts were just for kids…

tie dye


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