Facs4fun's Blog

Enriching the Lives of our FACS students

Tie-Dye…. Enter a world of color!

on March 7, 2011

Every year, the 8th graders make tie-dye t-shirts in Teen Living (the 8th grade program)  This is a project that we do at the end of the year, and the kids then have a shirt to take home with them…  I have done several dye projects with my daughter at home over the past few weeks – most recently, making t0-shirts for all of the cousins to wear when they are on vacation together.  There are several different kits that you can purchase, some better than others… and there are many tips and tricks that can help you to better create these beautiful shirts – Here are a few pointers if you decide that these are something that you would like to complete…


1.  Wear rubber gloves when tie-dying your shirt – You do not want to have hands stained with dye (it takes a few days for it to all wash out… turst me on this – It never fails that when I help with this project I get dye all over me)

2.  Wear old clothes, or an apron to protect your clothing – The sye will stain your clothes if it comes in contact with them, and no matter how hard you try, it will not come out.

3.  Have plenty of rubber bands on hand that stretch large – small rubber bands are not good for wrapping the shirts – They need to be large enough to stretch about 6 inches or so

4.  NEVER use items used for dying to later prepare food – All dying materials should only be used for that purpose later, even after they have been washed.


I get all of our dye from Pro Chemical and Dye and I use their color recommendations for the seasons, so if you are wanting to match the “in” colors for the year you can do that.  You will need to have the following materials…

1.  Soda Ash

2.  Urea

3. Dye bottle (squirt bottles with a small end to squirt the dye)

4.  Dye colors of your choice

I DO NOT use the following recommended items

*Metaphos (optional, but use if you have hard water)
*PRO Chem Flakes (optional, but use if you are in a smoggy environment)

There are many different ways to tie your shirt to be dyed – Below are a few of those examples.

You can see how to tie these shirts by following the directions HERE – there are also many videos on youtube.com that you can view to show you how to tie your shirts, and you can purchase instructional videos like the one we have in class that shows you how to tie the shirts as well as mixing dye and all the steps to dye them successfully!

Here are a few tips to dyeing your shirt. 

1. Squirt your dye with the reds, blues and purples at the neck area – yellow next to your face does not look good!

2.  Squirt from the outside edge of the shirt to the inside, to help prevent splatters across the shirt

3.  Dab your shirt with a paper towel before flipping over

4.  Squirt the same colors on the back side, in the same areas so that they match when you open your shirt.

5.  Squirting black dye is not a good choice – use other colors and try to avoid black.

6.  Do not squeeze too much dye into the shirt, or it will become a muddy brown color as the dye absorbs into other areas.  You want a nice bright shirt – More is not necessarily better in this case.

Feel free to post questions about how to dye or email your pictures for us to post on the blog.  we look forward to seeing what you have done!


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