Brave Hearts Girls Ministry

Tie-Dye Elective Merit

Purpose – Create patterns of color by folding and tying the fabric.

Supplies: String, rubber bands, cotton fiber socks, t-shirts, tank tops, bandanas, fabric dye, rubber gloves, newspaper or plastic trash bags to protect work surfaces.

       1.     Pre-wash cotton fabric.

       2.     Experiment with tying techniques including the following:

  • Stripes: Gather your shirt up into a tube-like shape. You can twist it for lots of white wrinkles, or leave it as is. Strap rubber bands all the way down the tube. The more rubber bands you add, the more white stripes you will have when finished!
  • Center Circle: For a centered circle on the front of the shirt, first lay the shirt out on a flat surface. Pinch a section right in the middle of the shirt and pull up toward you to make a tee-pee shape. Pull up more of the fabric for a larger circle. Close one hand around the base of the tee-pee and then tie it off with a rubber band. Twist the fabric you’ve sectioned off, and then add rubber bands down the length of it. The more rubber bands, the more circles.
  • Many Small Circles: For lots of small circles, pinch up fabric about 2-3”, insert a large marble (or Styrofoam ball) and tie it off with a thick rubber band or string so that the marble is secure.
  • Sunburst: Tie off a marble as instructed above. Use your pinky to measure about ½ inch behind the last rubber band. Tie off two more sections about a pinky-width apart. Tie another section 1 finger width after the last one, and try the last one at two finger widths.
  • Spiral: For a spiral design, simply pinch up a section in the middle of the shirt and twist it. Continue twisting until you have a spiral. Lay the spiral down on the shirt and curl the rest of the shirt around it like a tight nest. Take two large rubber bands and secure the nest so that it stays put.

       3.     Be sure that you have the right dye for the job. Use fiber reactive dye. It is color fast and easy to find at your local craft store. All-purpose dyes like RIT are easy to find, but you will be disappointed with the results after a few washings. When you buy a tie-dye kit, it will include fiber reactive dye.

       4.     Prepare your dye according to the instructions that it came with. If you do not mix the dye and water correctly, your dye will not be as vivid or colorfast.

       5.     You should be wearing old clothing for this step. Squirt the colors all over the shirt, paying attention to where you have tied it off. You can squirt the dye out randomly, or fill certain areas with color. Soak thoroughly with the dye.

       6.     Now the dye will need to set. Time to get a snack and let the garment soak.

       7.     At the least, wait at eight hours before rinsing. Letting it sit overnight is best. To keep the dye moist, wrap your garment in plastic wrap. You don’t want the dye to dry out or it will not properly react with the garment fibers.

       8.     After your dye has set, you will need to wash out the excess dye. Rinse by hand in cold water until the water runs clear. Then put your garment in the washing machine and send it through two hot wash and rinse cycles.

       9.     Your tie dye will be ready to wear after washing, but you should wash it by itself for the next few washings to prevent the dye from bleeding onto your other clothes.



Merit Completed: ___________________________________
                                   Parent/Leader Signature           Date



*Instructions on tie-dye techniques taken from the following website:

 Revised 5.11