How to Tie Dye Bandanas

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Tie-dyeing was a funky fad in the 1960's and continues to be popular today. While the many designs and patterns can be intricate, the basic technique for successful tie-dyeing remains the same. Tie-dyeing bandanas is a popular birthday party activity or summer camp craft for children. With proper care, the bandanas will provide years of use.

Things You'll Need

  • White bandannas
  • Elastic bands
  • Rubber gloves
  • Dye packets in various colors
  • Stainless steel pots
  • Warm water
  • Stainless steel spoon
  • Scissors
  • Drying rack or clothes dryer

Prepping the bandannas

  • Lay the bandanna flat on hard surface.

  • Grasp the center of the fabric and pull up so the rest of the bandanna drapes from this point.

  • Secure an elastic band around the bandanna center roughly 1 inch from the top, making sure the band is as tightly wound as possible.

  • Wind more elastic bands snugly along the length of the remaining fabric at 1 inch intervals.

Preparing the dye

  • Fill as many stainless steel pots with warm water as you need to make individual colors.

  • Put rubber gloves on your hands before opening dye packets.

  • Dissolve dye packets in the individual pots to create all of the colors you desire.

  • Stir the dye with a stainless steel spoon to distribute the color even throughout the water.

Tie-dyeing the bandanas

  • Dip sections of the bandana into individual colors of dye roughly 1 inch at a time, making sure to really saturate each section. Gently squeeze out any excess liquid.

  • Allow bandana to air dry for 24 hours with the elastic bands in place.

  • Cut the elastic bands with scissors and remove them from the bandana.

  • Flatten the bandana and dry completely either on a drying rack or in a clothes dryer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wash bandanas in cold water with like colors to avoid excess dye staining other garments.
  • Do not use enamel-lined pots; they will absorb the dye.
  • Touching the dye without gloves may temporarily stain your hands.

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References

  • Photo Credit Clothes Line image by KateC from Fotolia.com
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