Two weekends ago I did something I haven't done since I was a Girl Scout; I tie-dyed stuff! Now, this wasn't your typical tie-dye, this was indigo done the old fashioned way. No bottles of Rit Dye this time, everything would be a beautiful deep blue, a little more sophisticated than your run-of-the-mill, Grateful Dead-esque tie-dye. Indigo dye doesn't turn blue until it hits the air, the lime-green mixture oxidizes and turns a deep blue. Because it's a natural dye it take a lot of dipping and re-dipping to get a deeper shade of blue. I dipped each of my pieces four times, waiting 30 minutes between each dipping to let the color develop. To be honest, I wish I had dipped it at least three more times because some of the pieces didn't get as blue as I wanted them,but everything came out really nice! I did four tea towels, one t-shirt, and two scarves and the kit I bought from Amazon came with everything you need (other than a 5 gallon bucket) to dye. It even came with rubber bands and a booklet with design ideas/how-to's that helped me create some cool stuff!
Dyeing with indigo (known traditionally as "Shibori") is super fun, but VERY VERY MESSY! I recommend wearing an outfit you don't mind getting messy, doing the dying on something you don't mind being blue forever, with big rubber dish-gloves, outside where it's alright if things get splattered. It can be a fun thing to do on your fire escape or balcony, just make sure you put down a drop cloth or something. This stuff went everywhere. It also stained my sink when I pour the dye out when I was finished, but It came out with about an hour of hardcore bleaching (flush it down the toilet!).
Even though the process is a bit time-consuming and messy, it was totally worth it. I'm planning on doing this again to make Christmas presents and any white cotton fabric will do.You can make pillow cases, shirts, scarves, even bedspreads with cool shibori patterns, all with a little $14 kit! I highly recommend it for a lazy weekend! Dye away, everyone!