DIY: There’s a tie dye craze in my house


We have a tie dye craze going on in my house. It’s back apparently! I have a fashion conscious 13 year old who asked me to make 4 green tie dyed t-shirts for their upcoming swimming carnival and of course I couldn’t say no – it brings back some memories!

So after a few green ones, I got carried away and started making every day wear ones for all my boys…

It’s so easy! I hopped on YouTube to watch a few videos just to remind me how to do it. Did you tie dye when you were a kid in the 80s? Bleach your jeans? Make a bandana? Yep, that was me!

Here’s a quick run down on how I did it…

Kmart have lots of plain white t-shirts for $5. Although these are men’s sizes because Cruise wears men’s, but I also got smaller sizes from Best & Less for Tex and Chevy.

Wet the t-shirt with a spray bottle – front and back.


Below are 2 effects we went with. The first is the scrunched and the second is the spiral. Scrunching is easy – you just willy nilly scrunch up the t-shirt and pat it like pizza dough then place the same rubber bands around it like the spiral below.IMG_2335

For the spiral start in the middle of the shirt and spin the shirt with your fingers – and tuck it as you go.


Put rubber bands around to hold it in to place. It will work much easier if the t-shirt is damp so don’t forget that step.

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To make a cool spiral pattern use 4 dye colours in 4 corners. Overlap some of the colours in the middle so you create a mix of purple and orange too!



What you’ll need:

  • Spotlight have tie dye kits (which I bought). It has 3 bottles in blue, red and yellow (primary colours so you can also make additional colours). The kit contains rubber bands and gloves.
  • Single colour dye if you want that. I bought Kelly Green Jacquard dye (from Spotlight in a packet) and mixed it in a pot for the solid t-shirts.
  • Rubber bands and gloves (if you don’t buy a kit).
  • Squirty bottles (if you don’t buy a kit). I bought a plastic sauce bottle from Spotlight. It’s much much much easier to apply dye from a bottle especially if you’re doing a multicolour spiral pattern!
  • The single packet colour makes up huge amounts of dye and you could probably dye 5 t-shirts. I saved some dye after I was finished in an old drink bottle.
  • I did the entire project in/on my kitchen sink. It was very easy to clean up and everything washed and wiped up very easy. It wasn’t too messy.
  • The colours may look really bright when you put them on, but they do wash out and fade.
  • Once you’ve applied the colour, wrap each little parcel in a plastic shopping bag and let it sit for 12-24 hours.
  • Rinse in the sink and then wash through the machine without any detergent.
  • Then they are ready to wear!

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Here’s a few of my creations! I have another pile sitting in my laundry waiting to be washed out. Addicted much? Ha!

Have you tie dyed recently? Going to give it a go? Kids are loving this fashion they tell me! Not sure I’ll be wearing it though haha.

♥ KC.


  • Mandy Barbie Bieber Beyond

    I love the doing the tye dye…just not the mess (there is always mess in our house) Fortunately they are doing this a lot at schools now, which is great..and gets us off the hook!

  • Penny Barns

    Too messy for me to attempt I think…. But they are SO COOL

  • Design Chic

    I remember so vividly doing this, and have such fond memories! Love the green one!!

  • Julie

    Ha ha tie dye is so much fun but I am with you. Won’t be wearing it LOL.

    • Katrina (author)

      Lol! X

  • Sonia Life Love Hiccups

    Thanks babe – my boys have seen this and now they are desperate to do it too 😉 I hope you don’t mind me sharing a link to it in tonight’s weekend Rewind xx

  • Ingrid @ Fabulous and Fun Life

    My kids bought a tie dye kit over the internet in the Christmas holidays and they all have 3 tie dyed t-shirts each now, plus socks, shoes, a dress and even one pair of tie dyed undies!

    They’ve made a rule amongst themselves that if we’re all going out only one child can wear their tie dyed shirt at a time (as they don’t all want to look similar). It’s such a scramble now a days to see who gets their on first! haha!

  • Janet

    How much did you buy 1 bottle of tie dye at spotlight

    • Katrina (author)

      One bottle will do heaps of t-shirts for you 🙂

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