How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts

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Denim shorts are a staple in warm weather. You can spice up a pair of basic white denim shorts with an easy dyeing technique. Use this method to add your favorite color scheme to one garment. You can also use this tutorial to dye t-shirts, dresses and jeans.

(Image: Kirsten Nunez)

Things You'll Need

  • White denim shorts
  • Blue and red fabric dye
  • Shallow plastic bins (2)
  • Tarp or large plastic garbage bag 
  • Rubber gloves

Step 1

Cover your work space with a tarp or garbage bag. In the first bin, mix the blue powdered dye with water according to the package’s directions. Repeat with the red dye in the second bin. The more powdered dye you add, the darker the colors become.

Prep the blue and red fabric dye in two separate bins.
Prep the blue and red fabric dye in two separate bins. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)

Step 2

Place the two bins of fabric dye side by side. Lay the left side of the white shorts in the blue dye and the right side in the red.

Keep the middle portion of the shorts out of the dye.
Keep the middle portion of the shorts out of the dye. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)

Step 3

Carefully rotate the shorts to submerge the top or bottom parts into the dye.

Re-position the shorts to apply more dye.
Re-position the shorts to apply more dye. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)

Step 4

Rinse the shorts under running water until the water turns clear. Wash in the washing machine for one cycle or according to the package’s directions.

Carefully read the dye’s packaging for specific washing instructions.
Carefully read the dye’s packaging for specific washing instructions. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)

Step 5

Let the shorts dry completely.

Let your new shorts dry completely before you put them on.
Let your new shorts dry completely before you put them on. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)

Step 6

And they're ready to wear!

Red and blue fabric dye on white shorts is perfect for July 4th.
Red and blue fabric dye on white shorts is perfect for July 4th. (Image: How to Make Red, White and Blue Shorts)
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