1. Protect work surface with plastic trash bags or a disposable plastic table cover. Cover with a layer of paper towels to absorb excess dye. Tip: You can also dye your project on a large pastry cooling rack set over your sink to prevent fabric from sitting in pooled dye.
2. Prewash fabric to remove sizing. Choose a natural fiber fabric to best absorb the dye into the fibers (cotton, wool, rayon, silk). Do not use fabric softener or dryer sheet.
3. Mix soda ash solution in a large bucket according to package directions and soak garment to be dyed. Wring out excess solution before binding fabric.
4. If you are planning to dye your project dry, tie your garment into desired tie pattern and allow to dry. If you are dying your project wet, tie into desired tie and proceed with dyeing. Note: Mixed soda ash solution can be used multiple times until gone, and does not lose effectiveness over time.
5. Wearing gloves from kit, add water to dye bottle, filling to line. Replace cap tightly. Shake until dye is dissolved and allow mixed dye to set for time suggested in package instructions to achieve maximum dye consistency. Use full-strength for intense colors. For a lighter shade of color, add more water using extra bottle if needed.
6. Apply dye on fabric, checking to make sure dye has penetrated into folds. Do not over-saturate fabric. If dye is applied too close together, the colors may become muddy.
7. Cover dyed fabric with plastic wrap to keep damp. Or leave project on pastry cooling rack and cover with plastic. Let set 6-8 hours or over night for most intense colors.
8. Fully rinse dyed fabric in warm water until all extra dye is removed and water runs clear - removing rubber bands if used. Fill washer to large load setting with hottest water suitable for the fabric and a small amount of laundry soap. Wash and dry separately. Wash separately the first few washes. Do not allow dyed fabric to rest wet on other items.
Note: Do not add water to dye until you are prepared to apply it.
Allow mixed dye to sit after mixing for time suggested in instructions to achieve maximum thickness. Thicker dye will result in less color penetration and more border definition, whereas thinner dye will penetrate and blend more on fabric.
Apply dye within 24 hours after mixing. Dye left unapplied after 24 hours will begin to lose concentration and will result in noticeably weaker color intensity.
Plastic wrap or a disposable plastic table cover can be used for larger work areas.
Dyeing your project on a pastry cooling rack placed over the sink helps minimize drips and helps keep colors from merging on the bottom of project.
Place small items in laundry bag for washing. If darker dye drops on lighter dye, rub off to remove excess. Make sure excess dye dust is removed from work area. It is invisible until it reacts with water.
Create new colors by blending dye colors. Create lighter colors by adding more water to mixed dye.
Test mixed colors on scrap fabric, adding more dye or water to achieve desired color or intensity.
Cover dyed fabric with plastic to keep it from drying out. Projects can be left on cooling rack and covered to keep dye colors separate.
Precautionary note: Always wear gloves when working with dyes. Dry dye powder can cause an allergic reaction in some people. Avoid inhaling dye dust over an extended period of time. Use in well-ventilated area. Supervise children doing tie-dye projects.
Caution: May irritate skin and eyes. Avoid contact with eyes, skin or clothing. Do not swallow. Wear rubber gloves and safety glasses. Keep out of reach of children.
First Aid Treatment: Contains organic dye and sodium bicarbonate. If swallowed, contact a poison control center or doctor immediately. Do not induce vomiting. If in eyes, rinse with water for 15 minutes. If on skin, rinse well with water. Adult supervision required.