Homemade Hippie Costumes

Written by jim skelter
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Homemade Hippie Costumes
Tie-dye makes a hippie costume. (happy hippie image by Ingrid Walter from Fotolia.com)

The hippie movement of the 1960s is characterised by a style of fashion. From bell bottoms to bandannas, loud and vibrant colours hit the streets of San Francisco, a fashion expression that spread like wildfire throughout the nation. The hippie costume is relatively easy to make at home. Just a few crafty manipulations of old clothes hanging in your closet and you'll be saying "groovy" in no time.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Scissors
  • Sewing needle and thread
  • White cotton T-shirt
  • Pair of trousers
  • Soda ash
  • Rubber bands
  • Procion dye
  • Plastic gloves
  • Squirt bottle
  • Plastic container or bag
  • Laundry soap
  • 5-gallon bucket
  • Funnel
  • Water
  • Rack
  • Stitch remover
  • Measuring tape
  • 2 large sheets of paper
  • Fabric
  • Straight pins

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  1. 1

    Wash a cotton T-shirt and lay it, still wet, flat on a table. Twist the middle of the shirt into a spiral. Tie the spiral knot with three skinny rubber bands.

  2. 2

    Using a 5-gallon bucket and rubber gloves, stir in a half cup of soda ash fixer for every gallon of water. Dip the T-shirt into the bucket of soda ash water until the fabric is saturated with the mixture.

  3. 3

    Carefully wring excess water and set the shirt on a shelf. The shirt can be dyed at this point.

  4. 4

    Mix different colours of procion dye with water into squirt bottles. Take the cap off the squirt bottle and insert the funnel. Add one tablespoon of dye for every 473ml. of water. Shake the bottle until dye powder is mixed well with water.

  5. 5

    Tie the shirt around the original spiral and affix rubber bands around it. Place the shirt on a rack that is inside a plastic container or bag. Hold the shirt on its side and apply a base colour to the entire bottom edge of the shirt. Apply your next colour to one-third of the shirt. Apply two more colours to the shirt in the remaining two-thirds of white space. The shirt should look like a pie cut into three equal pieces.

  6. 6

    Leave the T-shirt to sit for 12 to 18 hours. Wash with hot water and laundry soap. Now you've got a tie-dye shirt ready to wear.

  1. 1

    Remove the stitches from the vertical seam on each leg of your trousers with a stitch remover.

  2. 2

    Cut a flare panel pattern from the sheet of paper. Measure the vertical height of the cut in the pant leg. Try for a triangular shape.

  3. 3

    Pin the flare panel to your fabric with straight pins. Cut around the pattern, leaving 1 inch on each side. Sew the pinned fabric to the pant leg with needle and thread.

  4. 4

    Hem the bottom of the triangular fabric panel to the original pant leg hem.

  5. 5

    Repeat steps 1 through 4 on the other pant leg.

Tips and warnings

  • Wrap a bandanna around your head, or add a pair of sunglasses with coloured tint. You also can throw on a shawl or scarf around your neck and wear long jewellery.

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