Summer is almost here!!! And for a lot of you guys, you’re already on break (luckyyyyyy)! I don’t know about you guys, but where I live, lately the weather has been getting much warmer and the sun has been out all day. I was thinking about some activities that would be fun to do on hot summer days…
And came up with…
Tie dye shirts! This post will show you how to make a swirl shirt, and a Mickey Mouse shirt! These shirts require super low effort and look super cute! My family is going on a trip to DisneyLand in July, and we decided that it’d be fun to make tie dye Mickey Mouse shirts for me and my siblings. These shirts are super easy to make and really fun! If you start them in the morning, they can be ready by that evening if you want to wear them the next day. A lot of instructions say to soak your shirt in soda ash, but I didn’t do that and the colors still look great and super bright! When making your shirt, just make sure that you do them outside or in a place that’s okay to get messy, because the dye can get everywhere if you’re not careful. My shirt was really big and baggy on me, so I trimmed off the sleeves and tied it and it looked super cute.
And guys! The really cool part of this so that you can do this with a lot of different things too, not just shirts! You can also dye headbands, sweatshirts, socks, or canvas bags! They’re a super fun way to add color to pretty much anything. Father’s Day is coming up, you can also make your dad(s) a tie dye chef apron! Or heck, make it for yourself! Also, you don’t have to use Mickey for your shape, you can use whatever shape you want!
I based the Mickey Mouse shirt from this post.
What you need (Swirl)
What you need (Mickey)
- Tie dye kit
- Fabric pen
- Bleach pen
- Dental floss (trust me! It’s waxed, so it makes it harder for the colors to bleed into each other)
- Plastic wrap
- Stencil/outline of Mickey head
Instructions for swirl
- Wet your shirt. It should be damp, but not sopping! This’ll help the colors bleed more.
- Lay your shirt out somewhere that can get messy! In the tie dye kit above, it comes with a plastic sheet, so that’s what I spread across a table outside. Grab the center of your shirt (or wherever you want your swirl to be coming from) and twist it until it’s a circle! Wrap it in rubber bands to hold it together and separate it into sections.
- Pick out the colors of dye you want and add water. Mix it until you can’t see any of the powder.
- Now comes the fun part! Squirt dye into the sections you want. It’ll look really cool if you use colors across from each other in the color wheel when you put the dye on the cloth. Be careful when putting it on because you don’t want random spots of color in the middle of your shirt! One easier way to do this is the keep the nozzle of the dye on the cloth as opposed to squirting it from above. I made my shirts rainbow, but you can use whatever combination you want!
- Wrap it in plastic wrap and just leave it to itself for at least the next 6-ish hours or overnight. For my older brother’s shirt, I let it sit for a couple days!
- This part will probably take a while now! Rinse the shirt in cold water until it runs clear.
- Now the big reveal! Take off the rubber bands and spread out the shirt! Give yourself a pat on the back for being so awesome and productive.
- Wash your shirt in hot water! For me, the colors actually stayed best when I hand washed it, but still worked super well in the washing machine! Just be sure to wash it by itself and don’t use a lot of soap. Dry your shirt and voila!!!
Instructions for Mickey
- Trace the Mickey head into your shirt in a washable fabric pen.
- Using the dental floss, thread your needle and make really big stitches all around the outline! This step is super super easy, as long as you’re careful you don’t poke yourself with the needle. These stitches can be however big or small you want, you just want the outline around your shape.
- Pull the ends of the floss together! Tie them as tightly as you can without breaking the floss.
- Wet your shirt. Wring it out after you soak it so it’ll be damp but not SUPER wet.
- Wrap a rubber band around the floss so it borders the pen ON THE OUTSIDE!!! This step is really important. If you go inside the lines, it won’t be the right shape. Wrap the rubber band as tightly as possible.
- Lay out the rest of your shirt so it looks kind of like a log/snake thingie and put rubber bands every couple of inches along it.
- Dye it! You can use a pattern or just have random colors. Again, keep the nozzle on the cloth so there’s not a huge mess after!
- Wrap it in plastic wrap, and put it in a plastic bag if you want to move it. Let it rest for at least 6 hours or up to a few days.
- Rinse it in cold water until the water runs clear. This step will probably take a while depending on how much dye you used!
- Time for the big reveal!!! Take off the rubber bands and cut the floss. Be careful not to cut the shirt!
- To better define your Mickey (or whatever shape you used), use a bleach pen and go around it! Rub it into the cloth.
- Wash your shirt in hot water and then dry it! I washed it by hand and it worked slightly better than when I washed it in the washing machine, but both work! Be sure to wash it by itself and use very little soap. You can wear it as soon as it dries! Now you have an awesome new shirt!