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Tie Dying with natural dye made at home!

Want to do a fun craft in the garden? This tie dying tutorial is lots of fun and a super cheap alternative to the kits you can buy!

You will need:

Cotton T-shirt

Pots of hot water

Chosen fruit or veg

Water bottles or jugs


Elastic bands

Plastic bags

Water bucket or bowls


First you will need to prime your T-shirts, so that the dye will stick to them the best it can. You can do this alongside making your dye.

To do this you will need to simmer them in a solution of 2 parts boiling water, 1 part vinegar (works best) or salt for 1 hour. Rinse under cold water and then leave wet to dye after.


Choose your colours-

Reds & Pinks: Raspberries, strawberries, cherries, beetroot & cranberries

Blue & Purples: Blueberries, blackberries, purple cabbage & grapes

Greens: Spinach, grass & artichoke

Yellows: lemon peel, orange peel & turmeric

I found that the blueberries & turmeric worked best!


1- Add a big handful of a fruit or veg into each pot and add boiling water to cover- make sure you have at least 1.5 pints. Bring the water to a boil and then gently simmer for 1 hour. Keep checking to make sure you don't lose too much water. If you choose to use turmeric, heat this for only 30minutes.

2-Once you have a good colour, take it off the heat and let it cool .

3- Use a sieve to remove all of the fruit of veg, and pop your coloured water into separate jugs or water bottles. You can also use old washing up bottles- or whatever may have a squeezy top. I used small jugs.


Watch our video below to learn 3 different techniques of how to tie your T-shirts. You can then use the elastic bands to do your own!

Then you'll be ready to dye!


1- Squeeze or pour your dye onto your T-shirt in all different areas. There is no wrong way of doing this! Repeat with each colour.

Remember to do each colour over a new bowl, to keep the colours from mixing. This way you can use them again!

2- Once you have finished dying, place your T-shirt into a plastic bag. Leave it in a warm place for at least 4 hours- I left mine over night. The longer you leave it, the better the colour.

3- Rinse under cold water and take off all elastic bands. Leave to dry!

That's it, you're done!

Please send us any pictures of your creations! Happy Making!


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