- Something to Dye - The first thing you need is the item you wish to dye. The most common item is a t-shirt, but you can dye just about anything (shirt, pants, socks, handkerchief, pillowcase, sheets, curtains, tablecloth, etc). You just need to make sure it is at least 60% cotton.
- Something to Tie With - You also need rubber bands or string to tie up the item you will be dyeing. After all, the tying is what makes all of the cool, one-of-a-kind designs. We will cover different ways you can fold and tie your items in these step-by-step directions.
- Dye - When it comes to dye, you have a few options. For our projects, we used RIT brand dye. This is usually my first choice for three reasons: 1) I have used it before with much success, 2) It is readily available, and 3) Each color cost us less than $3. You can also buy kits made especially for tie-dying or try Simply Spray.
Other than the above necessities, here is a list of other supplies you may need:
- Rubber Gloves - To protect your hands from the dye.
- Large Pot or Bucket - Used to mix the dye - it should be able to hold 3 - 5 Gallons and it should be old so you don't care if it gets stained.
- Squirt or Spray Bottles - Can be used to apply some brands of dye.
- Long-Handles Utensil - An old spoon, B-B-Q tongs, etc. to stir the dye.
- Soda Ash - This is sodium carbonate which is used with some dyes to pre-treat the item you are tie-dyeing to help create more vibrant colors.
- Salt - Used with RIT dye to help make darker colors more vibrant.
- Plastic Bag - Some dyes require the dyed item to sit in plastic bag for approx. 24 hours.
- Newspaper and/or Plastic Garbage Bag - Used to protect your work area.
- Rags, Paper Towels, Cleanser - For quick cleanup.
Remember, these items are listed just to give you an idea of what you may need. Read the package your dye came in to see which supplies you will definitely need. Once you have your supplies gathered, you can get on with the tying and dyeing.