Looney Labs Something Mailing list Archive

Re: [Something] Tie-dying question

  • Fromkerry_and_ryan@xxxxxxx
  • DateThu, 12 Apr 2007 15:07:10 +0000
I think back to when I was 12 or so and the washed-out colors and poor coverage we got from some mass-marketed kit that the school bought, and I'm surprised I ever tried tie-dying again.  Luckily, the Looneys came along and showed some of what was possible to do at home with the right supplies.

Go to
and get one of their starter kits.

PRO: The colors are fan-freakin-tastic, especially compared the RIT type of tie dye kits.

CON: You have to let the shirts (or whatever) sit overnight.  No instant gratification.

Remember: Lemon + Fuschia = Red; 
          Fuschia + Turquoise = Blue; 
          Turquoise + Lemon = Green

In case you can't find it somewhere else...
How to make the classic Swirl pattern:  
(See http://images.dharmatrading.com/images/eng/products/110/tdsp_1.gif)
1. Lay the shirt out on a flat surface.
2. Pick a spot to be the center of the swirl.  The midpoint between the underarms is good.
3. Grab that point with a spring clothespin or metal binder clip.
4. Now start twisting the clothespin without lifting it, so that shirt comes together 
   in sort of a hockey puck shape.
5. Use three or four rubber bands to make the hockey puck keep its shape.
6. Use each of the three colors of dye to color three sixths of the puck.
   The colors should over lap so that you have sixths of the puck that are...
   lemon, lemon+fuschia, fuschia, fuschia+turquoise, turquoise, and turquoise+lemon

Follow all the tips that come with kit.  You know, stuff like washing the shirts first and making sure you get the squirt bottle tips down into the wrinkles of the tied up shirt.

Even if you don't get kit from Dharma Trading, make sure you do get Fiber Reactive dyes.  Dharma has some info on its site about dye chemistry (of course touting the types of dyes they sell).

If you do decide to go this route, let the list know -- I'm sure there are any number of little tips and tricks we've accumulated.

I hope this helps.


P.S. If you want to see my tie dye portfolio to decide the experience level behind my advice, I'll have to dig up the pictures and put them on a web site somewhere.  ...but it's doable.

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