HOW TO TIE-DYE A DENIM SHIRT WITH BLEACH (Or a Dress or a Jacket)!
This is one of our summer diy sewing projects that we’re just getting around to posting *sighs*…BUT (there’s always a but)…it’s actually a great early September project that will give you something you can wear into the fall. Bleach dye is a nod to the 70s - and it’s really cool paired with full tonal denim looks or even khakis for a very early 2000s “The Gap” vibe. It’s also a great base layer under a cardigan for hot-cool days + nights. The best part about bleach-dying? It’s quick, easy, and you probably have everything you need to get started in your house (save for our Frankie Top or Dakota Dress kit!).
So here’s what you’ll need:
- Frankie Smocked Top Kit in Chambray
- Bleach in a spray bottle mixed with a splash of water or a bleach-based household cleaner
- Rubber bands
- Gloves — to protect your hands!
#ProTip: If you’re doing this inside, crack a window or two!
Now for the steps….
Wait, actually, now would be a good time to direct you to our YouTube channel where Rob Younkers has created a full step-by-step breakdown. You can play it in the background while you work. Or watch it all. It’s only 3 and a half minutes.
But back to the steps….
So the technical first step one would be making the Frankie top, which we’ve made so easy you can do it in an afternoon. Beginner friendly. Kid friendly. It’s genuinely a fun easy sewing project everyone can enjoy. Stitch up the sides, pick your straps, and you’re good to go. You can watch Rob’s tutorial for that, also on youtube, here.
Third time’s the charm….HERE ARE THE STEPS (really! Digress we will not!)
1. Band It:
Create tight little bunches of fabric that you secure with rubber bands. The tighter you make them, the less likely bleach will be to expand into that area — creating the pattern we want. You can even do the straps for an extra finished look.
2. Take it to the Tub (or outside or area that can withstand sitting bleach) and Spray (liberally!)
3. Let it Sit - Let the top cure for about 45 minutes (or until it’s bleached to a level you like)
4. Rinse It! Spray the top down with water removing as much bleach as you can
5. The Reveal! Remove the rubber bands (Tob’s favorite part).
6. Quick Wash Time - Once you rinse your top out, throw it on the washing machine on a quick wash cycle, cold water .
7. Air dry & Enjoy
And that's it! This is such a fun activity to do with friends (matching tops are kind of the new friendship bracelets?)...and really just an all around easy and stylish thing to do. And, as always, nothing feels as good as being able to say "I made this!"
xo Team TM!