‘Tie and dye’ also known as ‘Adire’ is a resist-dyed cloth that uses different techniques to achieve diverse patterns on the fabric. The term adire actually means “tied and dyed, and it was first applied to the indigo-dyed cloth.
The tie-dye processes have various methods to achieve patterns on fabrics, and these methods consisting of stitching, folding, tying, pleating, and binding (using strings, twine, thread, rubber band). The manipulations of the fabric prior to the application of dye are called resists, as they partially or completely prevent the applied dye from coloring the fabric.
Before you set out to dye a fabric you should bear in mind that the item which serves as a resist gives different effects on the fabric. The effect of using a thread won’t be the same when you use twine or rubber. The ability to replicate designs as a first-timer might seem difficult, but take consolation with the fact that every piece is unique, and with the number of different products you can tie–dye, the options are endless.
Tie & Dye Supplies
- Rubber Bands/ Twine/ Thread/Rafia
- A 100% cotton white shirt/ Fabric
- Latex gloves
- Fabric dyes
- Plastic Kettle
- A large bowl or a bucket
- Knotted; This design can be achieved using pebbles embedded into the fabric and individually tied using raffia/twine but also you can achieve this design without making use of pebbles. Spread out your plain white fabric and tie little knots across it, afterward dip it in a bowl of water for 5 minutes before dipping in a bath of dye. After your fabric has dried, don’t loose the knot, repeat the same method, and dye in a different color of dye. After rinsing out 3-4 times, then you can loosen the knots and let it dry.
Pleated; Pleat the fabric you’re working with and tie it together using twine. Soak the fabric in a bowl of water for five minutes, and afterward, lay it on your work surface (preferably on the floor) to begin the dyeing process. Pour out the different colors of dyes strategically on the necessary parts of the fabric and after you’re done, leave it to set in for at least five minutes before you proceed to rinse out and dry.
Binding; There are several methods to achieve this technique but in order to achieve a similar look to the image below, here are the procedures.
- Hold out the shirt from one side and use rubber to hold tightly, different points of the held out corner. Pour the different colors of dye gradually while making your way to the last rubber, and afterward, dip the remaining part of the plain shirt into a primary dye color. The rubber serves as a resist, which would hinder the dye from taking over all parts of the shirt. The resisted part remains white in color giving it a more beautiful look.