Kool Aid Tie-Dye Instructions

You can use basic Kool Aid to dye cloth.
You can use basic Kool Aid to dye cloth. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

If you enjoy making tie-dyed T-shirts, then you know how exciting it is to tie up and dye a cotton T-shirt to create whimsical, energetic patterns. If you do not have any liquid or powdered fabric dye, you can still create a tie-dyed T-shirt. One way to do this is to use Kool Aid packets, which contain large amounts of food coloring. If you combine the Kool Aid packets with water and salt, you can create a dye bath that will dye the fabric as well as commercial fabric dye.

Things You'll Need

  • 4 Kool Aid packets, any color
  • Stock pot
  • Spoon
  • Salt
  • Rubber bands
  • Cotton T-shirts

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Fill a stock pot with 2 gallons of water, and pour four packets of Kool Aid into the water. Stir the water well with a spoon to allow the Kool Aid to dissolve completely in the water.

Pour 1 cup of salt into the solution. Salt helps the food coloring in the Kool Aid adhere more readily to cotton fabric. Stir the solution well with a spoon to help the salt dissolve into the water.

Heat the stock pot over high heat until the solution boils, then reduce the heat to medium-low to allow it to simmer.

Tie a cotton T-shirt with rubber bands. Make sure that the rubber bands are twisted around the shirt tightly. If the rubber bands are too loose, it will enable the dye water to soak into the areas where you tied.

Soak the tied T-shirt into the Kool Aid solution, and push it down until it is completely submerged. Allow the T-shirt to soak in the water for 10 minutes.

Remove the T-shirt from the solution, and rinse it with water until the water runs clear. Remove the rubber bands to reveal the tie-dyed patterns.

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