How to Make Tie-Dye Dylon Fabric Dye

Written by sue balk
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How to Make Tie-Dye Dylon Fabric Dye
Tie-dye items at home using your favourite Dylon colours. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Dylon has manufactured and sold fabric dyes for more than 60 years, offering a wide variety of colours and products. Tie-dye a scarf, T-shirt, tablecloth or piece of fabric by using your favourite Dylon colour. It is easy to tie-dye at home; preparing the item for the dyeing process takes a matter of minutes and dyeing only takes one hour for every colour except black. This craft project is suitable for older children and adults.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 1 white cotton item for tie-dying
  • Small scale
  • Large, flat-bottomed bowl
  • Liquid measuring cup, 1 pt. size or larger
  • Knife
  • 1 can of Dylon Cold Water Dye (500g.) per 227gr. of dry weight fabric
  • 113gr. salt for every can of colour
  • 1 packet of Cold Dye Fix for every can of colour
  • Thread or string, 2' each
  • Rubber bands

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  1. 1

    Weigh the fabric item you wish to dye using a small scale. Purchase enough Dylon products for your item. One can of Dylon Cold Water Dye is good for up to 227gr. of dry-weight fabric; if you plan on using black, one can will dye up to 113gr. of dry-weight fabric. Buy one packet of Cold Water Fix for each can of dye or two packets for each can of black dye.

  2. 2

    Wash the fabric item thoroughly, even if it is new, and leave it damp.

  3. 3

    Prepare your fabric item using different tying techniques. Crush the fabric item into a ball and tie it tightly with several pieces of string or rubber bands for a random pattern. Pinch the centre of a square piece of fabric with one hand and pull the fabric into a cone shape with the other hand. Tie string or rubber bands in sections around the cone shape to produce a circle pattern. Fold the fabric into a fan shape and tie it in several places for a striped effect. Set the fabric aside after you have securely tied your item as desired.

  4. 4

    Fill a large, flat-bottomed bowl with enough cold water to immerse the fabric item.

  5. 5

    Put on rubber gloves. Open the dye tin and dissolve the dye in one pint of hot tap water in a measuring cup; use a knife to stir. Add the dissolved dye to the bowl of water. If your item requires more than one can of dye, follow the same step for each additional can.

  6. 6

    Dissolve 113gr. of salt and one packet of Cold Dye Fix per can of colour in one pint of hot tap water. Use your knife to stir the solution. If using black dye, use 227gr. of salt and two packets of Cold Dye Fix per can to properly set the colour. Add the solution to the bowl.

  7. 7

    Place the tie-dyed item into the dye bath and leave it for one hour; if using black, let it sit for three hours. Agitate the water for the first 10 minutes. Stir occasionally for the remaining time.

  8. 8

    Remove the item after the time has elapsed. Rinse off the excess dye until the water runs clear.

  9. 9

    Remove the strings or rubber bands and unfold the material.

  10. 10

    Wash the item in warm, soapy water. Rinse and allow to dry. Iron the fabric.

Tips and warnings

  • To add more tie-dye colours and patterns to an item, repeat the process using an additional colour and a different tying technique.
  • Do not use a bath or sink unless it's stainless steel; the dye may leave a stain.

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