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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Salt Resist Tie Dye T Shirt

I didn’t check a white thrift store t shirt carefully enough in the store. I brought it home and realized it has a stain I can’t remove. Bummer.

Not really.

I tie dyed the t shirt and made it better than new!



Once upon a time, a booth at the Viking Festival sold tie dyed Scandinavian flag t shirts. I wanted a Danish flag tie dye t shirt, but they were out of my size. They haven’t been back to the festival since. This idea inspired my t shirt design.

Make a Danish Flag Tie Dye T Shirt



You will need: 


  • 100% Cotton T Shirt (MUST be cotton or another 100% natural fiber)
  • Tulip Tie Dye Kit (Because it worked so well on my tie dye drop cloth shoes
  • Tarp or plastic trash bag (recommended big time!)
  • Rock salt and/or uniodized sea salt (In the past using iodized table salt lead to major fails. Don’t be me.)
  • Spray Bottle and Water
  • Painter’s Tape
  • Scissors
  • Cardboard
  • Large plastic bag

Make it:

1. Wash the sizing out of the cotton t shirt if you are using a new t shirt. Do not use fabric softener. Allow the t shirt to dry.

2. Use the painter’s tape to tape off the flag design on the dry t shirt.

Tape time!

3. Place the cardboard inside the shirt. I cut a cardboard box to fit inside my shirt.

4. Dampen the front and back of the t shirt with the spray bottle full of water, carefully spraying around the tape. If the tape lifts up a little bit because it gets wet, it isn’t a big deal. This is tie dye after all. Tie dye isn’t perfect and that’s part of the charm.

5. Fill the premixed (and key to my tie dying success) bottle of red Tulip fabric tie-dye with water and shake to mix the color per the directions in the kit. I used the premixed Tulip dye because it worked so well on my  tie dye drop cloth shoes  I want to lessen the chance of the epic tie dye fails I’ve had in the past.

We how are about to (tie) dye salute you!

6. Spread the tarp or plastic trash bag on the ground outside. I recommend you do this outside, even though the squirt bottles makes dying less messy and less permanent dye mistakes on your kitchen floor, it never hurts to err on the side of easier clean up.

7. WEAR THE GLOVES THAT COME IN THE KIT. Unless you want red hands. The dye is nontoxic so that's not the issue.  Do you want to walk around town red handed? My guess is no.

8. Squirt the dye on the front of the t shirt, trying to avoid the taped off area. Make sure you cover the entire shirt with red dye.

9. Sprinkle uniodized rock salt and/or sea salt onto the front of the shirt to add texture. The dye will not penetrate where you sprinkle the salt.



10. Repeat steps 4 – 9 for the back side of the t shirt.


11. Place the dyed t shirt in a plastic bag and allow the color to cure. The directions say to leave it in the bag 4-6 hours. I left mine in the bag overnight.

12. Remove the t shirt from the plastic bag. Shake the salt off the shirt and remove the painter’s tape.

13. Rinse the excess dye from the shirt with cold water.

14. Wash the shirt in a large load of water with a small amount of laundry soap. 

15. Dry the shirt in the dryer to set the dye.

16. Wear it and work that shirt!

Skål! That's Danish for Cheers!

This is a great way to personalize or revitalize hand me down or thrift store shirt for back to school or in my case, Tuesday.

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