Blog, Makes

Tie- dye is the retro trend everyone wants for their homes in 2021

Tie dye patchwork throw originally made for Simply Sewing Magazine

Stylist Loves arrived in my inbox this morning with lots of lovely Tie Dye products you can buy for your home. As we are still in lock down with time on our hands, I will show you some very easy ways to create your own tie dye.

So what is tie dye? Tie dying or “Plangi” is a method of decorating cloth by isolating areas so that they resist the dye. This can be done in a number of ways, the most popular being tying string or yarn round parts of the cloth. Other methods, include, folding, clipping, sewing and encircling small objects such as seeds.

Different shapes can be made, by wrapping in different ways.

Circles are made by tying found objects such as stones, seeds, beans, marbles or buttons into the fabric. Or the fabric can just be drawn up into a peak and bound with thread or elastic band .

To make stripes the fabric is pleated or rolled. Length ways for vertical stripes, width ways for horizontal stripes. For diagonal stripes the cloth is pleated diagonally. Once pleated the fabric is then bound at regular intervals. It is best to iron the pleats for really crisp lines.

Paper clips create a narrow linear pattern by pleating the material in a concertina fashion, ironing it to flatten the pleats and then arranging the paper clips so that they are spread evenly along each fold of the pleated cloth.

Pegs may be used to create patterns, they will make slightly irregular square shapes on the fabric. The fabric shown was folded and then wound round a piece of rigid plastic before being dyed.

This chair cover was made from peg patterned tie dye

Safety pins can be done up tightly through random thicknesses and folds of fabrics

The fabric can be wrapped round a tube and fastened with elastic bands and then scrunched up. .

Fabrics for tie dying

The best fabrics for tie dye are the finer ones which can be tied more tightly and therefore make more intricate patterns.

Cotton, silk, wool or synthetics can all be used for tie dying. Most fabrics have a finish on them and this needs to be removed before dying. The best way to do this is to wash in warm water with soap flakes. Some fabrics such as cotton may have to be boiled to lose their finish. Once the fabric has been washed it should be dried and ironed before beginning tying.

Dyeing the fabric

Mix up the dye baths according to manufacturers instructions. The quilt shown here was made for Simply Sewing magazine used the following dye colours.

Dylon hand dye bahama blue

– Dylon hand dye in ocean blue

Wet each of the wrapped fabrics in a bowl of water. When thoroughly wet, divide the fabric wraps into two and put in the dye baths.

After dyeing the fabric

Remove the fabrics from their wrapping, rinse thoroughly and Iron. Cut the fabrics up and make your bag, curtains, cushion cover or quilt.

The cushions shown were originally designed for Home Style magazine. They were made by cutting down and recycling cotton pillow cases which were then tie dyed.

Tie dyed cushions made for HomeStyle Magazine from upcycled pillowcases

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