Create a beautiful and unique tie dye shirt at home without spending a single penny!
As a nineties kid I never taught I’d see this trend again. But as with all pre-loved trends, the tie dye effect also deserved a revival of its own.
It seems to have all started with tie dye track suits. And now the trend has made its way into high fashion as well as high street stores.
I love a good DIY fashion project and I’ve shared my own custom statement pieces here before.
You might also like my other DIY fashion tutorials:
Growing up in the nineties I’m no stranger to DIYing my own tie dye pieces.
This effect is created with the simplest technique, making it a great beginner’s project or kids activity idea.
And the best part, we’re using a homemade tie dye kit that requires nothing more than a few items that are probably already in your kitchen.
The idea behind this DIY tutorial is that you don’t have to spend any money on it, you don’t have to go out for supplies and you’re not left with a ton of waste afterwards.
I’ve been wanting to make and use natural dyes for a while now and there was one color in particular that I was ‘dyeing’ to try.
Naturally occuring tannin in avocado pits and peels give off a pink color.
Make Pink Dye From Avocado Waste
Contrary to what you might think, the tannin in avocado pits and skins give off a beautiful Pink stain.
The color pay off you get is a natural, blush, pastel pink, and is even been called the ultimate Millenial Pink by The New York Times.
Peel a ripe avocado and remove the pit. Rinse the pit and peels under running water to remove all the flesh. Leave on a windowsill to dry.
I’ve also read people freeze them until they’re ready for use.
When you’re ready to make your dye, fill a cooking pot with water until it reaches about an inch below the top rim.
Add the avocado pit and skin peels to the water.
Place the cooking pot over medium heat and wait until the water starts to boil. Bring it down to a simmer as soon as the water boils.
Let the water simmer together with the pit and peels for up to 2 hours.
After about half an hour the water should slowly start to color a light shade of pink. After 2 hours the water should look a very dark, almost red shade of pink.
Take the cooking pot off the heat and let the mixture cool to room temperature.
Create a DIY Tie Dye Effect
Instead of wasteful rubber bands I used a piece of string to tie parts of the t-shirt together.
The idea behind this tie dyeing technique is that the parts underneath the string and parts of the fabric that are folded together will soak up none or a lot less of the dye.
As opposed to the open, exposed parts of the fabric, they will soak up most of the dye and look a lot darker in comparison.
You can tie several strings around the shirt in whatever pattern you like.
If you’re looking for creative tie dye techniques I recommend this article that shows a number of easy tie dye patterns.
Make sure every string is tied tightly against the fabric and that you’ve added enough strings to get a nice effect for your tie dye shirt.
Color Shirt with Natural Avocado Dye
So far we’ve prepped our piece of clothing for dyeing and brewed our natural pink avocado dye mixture.
Now all that’s left for us to do is let the mixture stain our piece of clothing.
Place the fabric prepped for tie dyeing in a glass or plastic bowl. If your mixture is still hot make sure the bowl is heatproof.
Leave the mixture overnight to let the fabric soak up the dye.
The next morning, take the fabric out of the container and pour the remaining dye down the drain.
Rinse the fabric under a running tape for several minutes or until the water runs clear.
Carefully cut all the strings open and remove them from the shirt. Leave the tie dye shirt to air dry.
DIY Tie Dye Shirt with Natural Pink Avocado Dye
This tutorial combines some of the hottest trends right now: the tie dye color effect, diy homemade fashion and anything Millennial Pink. This classy, natural looking shade of pink is achieved by using an all-natural dyeing technique. Despite what your might think, the pits and skins of avocados can be used to color your garments not green, not brown, but in a pretty pastel shade of pink! The tannines that naturally occur in avocados are released into the water and create a beautiful stain that transforms almost any piece of clothing into a unique piece for your wardrobe.
- White or light coloured T-shirt
- Pit and Skin from 1 avocado
- Cooking Pot
- Spoon or thongs
- Large container
Make Pink Dye From Avocado skins and pit
- Peel a ripe avocado and remove the pit. Rinse the pit and peels under running water to remove all the flesh. Leave on a windowsill to dry or freeze them in a plastic bag until you're ready to use them.
- When you're ready to make your dye, fill a cooking pot with water until it reaches about an inch below the top rim. Carefully drop the avocado pit and skins into the water.
- Place the cooking pot over medium heat and wait until the water starts to boil. Bring it down to a simmer as soon as the water boils.
- Let the water simmer together with the pit and peels for up to 2 hours. After about half an hour the water should slowly start to color a light shade of pink. After 2 hours the water should look a very dark, almost red shade of pink.
- Take the cooking pot off the heat and let the mixture cool to room temperature.
Prep Your T-shirt for Tie Dyeing
- Use piece of string to tie parts of the fabric together. The classic way to do a tie dye effect is by creating concentric circles.
- Make sure every string is tied tightly against the fabric and that you've added enough strings to get a nice tie dye effect.
Use Natural Dye to color your shirt
- Place the piece of clothing in a container. Make sure the container is large enough to cover the fabric with the natural dye mixture.
- Pour the mixture of the shirt. Stir with a spoon to make sure the dye is spread evenly and touches the fabric as much as possible in every corner.
- Let the mixture sit overnight to let it stain your clothing.
Finish Your Project
- The next morning (or approximately 12 hours later) you can take the shirt out of the dye bath.
- Hold the fabric under a running tap of cold water until the water runs clear.
- Let the shirt air dry to set the stain.
- I used approximately 1 gallon of water and 1 avocado for 1 medium-sized t-shirt. Multiply these amounts accordingly if you want to dye several pieces of clothing at the same time.
- For this project I haven't pre-treated the fabric and it doesn't require a mordant. Even tough the effect is permanent, it's likely to fade over time as all colors and most pieces of clothing fade over time.
- Wash with care. Use similar colors and hand wash if needed.