Transform a Black T-Shirt Into Something Trendy With the Reverse Tie-

5 Materials
2 Hours

Have a black, plain old, boring shirt lying around? Get your creative juices flowing and turn something so boring into a fashion masterpiece! In this tutorial, I am going to show you how to do a reverse tie-dye using bleach. Most of the materials used here are household items, so there will probably be no need to purchase materials unless you don’t stock the materials at home. I hope you enjoy this easy DIY reverse tie-dye tutorial!

Reverse tie-dye

Tools and materials:

  • Bleach
  • Gloves
  • Black T-shirt
  • Squeeze bottle
  • Zip ties or rubber bands
How to reverse tie-dye

Fold your black shirt in half

Get a clean, black T-shirt, lay it out on a smooth surface, and fold it in half. Make sure the T-shirt is smoothed out and that there are no creases present. 

Reverse tie-dye patterns

Pleat your T-shirt vertically

Start the pleating method by pleating your folded shirt vertically. Work your way from the bottom to the top and gather the material by making small pleats in the shirt. 


When pleating, fold the sleeve and come back to it when you’re done with the top itself.

Reverse tie-dye bleach

Place zip ties

Once your whole shirt is pleated, hold it in place and add zip ties 2 inches apart. It is up to you how far apart you want your zip ties- it’s your call! 


If you don’t have zip ties on hand, you can use rubber bands.

Reverse tie-dye with bleach and color

Pleat the sleeve and place zip ties

Pleat the sleeve and add zip ties, too. 

How to do reverse tie-dye

Make your bleach solution

Now here’s the fun part! It’s time to start bleaching. Take a squirt (or spray) bottle and fill it up with half water and half bleach. Also, remember to wear your gloves! 

Spritz or spray bleach

Spritz your bleach lightly 

Spritz a little bleach along the front part of your cable-tied shirt. Don’t put too much and do this with ease.

Add more bleach between each segment

Add more bleach between the cable ties

Then, between the cable ties, add more bleach on each section. I wanted to give it an interesting design so I did the process on every other section.

You will see some sections have more bleach than others.

Add bleach to the back part

Repeat the same steps on the back

Repeat the same method on the back of the shirt and let the shirt dry for about 20 minutes. 

Cut the zip ties

Cut the zip ties after the shirt dries 

After the shirt is dried, cut the zip ties off and have a look at how your creation turned out. 

Rinse in cold water

Rinse the shirt in cold water 

Rinse your reverse tie-dye shirt under running, cold water and let it air dry for 30 minutes, and pop it in the dryer for another 30 minutes.

Easy reverse tie-dye outcome

This is how it turned out! I love this design, it’s funky and definitely on fleek! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and good luck! 

Suggested materials:

  • Bleach
  • Gloves
  • Black t-shirt
See all materials

Join the conversation

3 of 12 comments
  • Daisy
    on Mar 16, 2021

    Way, way back in the 70's, I tie-bleached a pair of cut off jeans for my son who was about 11 or 12 at the time. He just loved them and wore them all the time.

    • Rusti
      on Mar 26, 2021

      They were all the style back then and seem to be coming back this year... whoda thunk it?

  • Gauge
    on Mar 21, 2021

    How do I get rid of this

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