Basic Technique question
  • I've just started out tie-dying, and want to do more. My basic setup is a rack within a clear tupperware-type box that seems to keep the t-shirts clear of any "drippings" that accumulate as I'm dying (no problems there). What I'm finding is that when I transfer the dyed t-shirts to a plastic bag, excess dye accumulates on the bottom of the bag, and parts of my shirt get muddled (where all the colors mix and you just get a big black blob)...

    My question is, should I be letting the shirts sit on the rack longer (until they no longer drip), or is there an alternative to putting the shirts in the bags?

    My thought is that I could potentially put a cover over the top of the tupperware box, in lieu of transferring to a bag over night. This does however, take up the box so that I can only make 3-4 shirts at a time.

    Does anyone have any tips they can share?
  • I personally wait for it to stop dripping. You just don't need that extra dye, so why not wait until it stops.
  • I usually give it a squeeze before bagging... depending on the pattern. For example, if I'm doing a swirl, I'd put one hand on top and one on the bottom, and squeeze the excess out. If I'm doing something more intricate, like a peace sign, I squeeze each part as I do it. Actually, this is almost necessary, as it's easy for a dark color to rub off on the rack and suddenly reappear on the light colored parts.

    Another thing to help is making sure to squeeze the heck out of your shirts before dying. The water from the soda ash really adds a lot to the dye. Getting the shirt as dry as possible (without actually drying it) can keep the dye from dripping. But then, the less water you have, the more blotchy your dye. It doesn't collect in those nice little random strings of color.