How to Tie-Dye a Bucket Hat & Decorate It With Mirror Work Embroidery

Samera Boa
by Samera Boa
10 Materials
12 Hours

I have an exciting tutorial for you today! Get ready to learn how to tie-dye a bucket hat and then do shisha embroidery, otherwise known as mirror work embroidery. This is a beautiful embroidery technique from Pakistan.

This is a fantastic project for beginners, too, as I’ll show you a unique way how to tie-dye a bucket hat with string! Let’s get to it.

Tools and materials:

  • White bucket hat
  • Powder base tie dyes
  • Pot
  • Salt
  • String 
  • Scissors
  • Kitchen utensils
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Shisha mirrors

Tie-dye bucket hat DIY

Tie dye bucket hat with string

Scrunch up your hat and tie a piece of string around it. Make sure you tie it as tightly as possible. In the end, it should be shaped like a little ball. 

Placing the hat in hot water

Place the hat in a pot of hot water. Make sure the hat is immersed in water and turn the heat up to the max. Powder dye needs heat to be activated. 

Adding yellow powder dye

Next, take out your powder dye and add a little to the water. You’ll need to estimate how much you need based on the brightness and intensity you want. Remember, powder dye is very pigmented, so be mindful of how much you put in. 

Adding red powder red

Once you feel the dye has absorbed into the bucket hat, grab your other color and add it in. I’m using a mixture of red and yellow to make a lovely orange. However, I made a bit of a mistake by adding too much red dye. 

Bucket hat tie dye tutorial

Next, add the binding component to the water; salt! This will keep the color from washing out over time. 

Use a handful of salt for 7L (3.5 cups) of water. 

DIY tie dye bucket hat

Here’s the bucket hat, in all of its Cheeto glory! This whole process took around 10 minutes. 

Cutting off the string to reveal the design

Now, unravel the string. 

Placing the hat back in the dye

I didn’t like the way mine looked, so I went back to the dye water, added some H20, and managed to fill in the white spots with a pastel orange. 

Orange tie dye bucket hat DIY

Now, this is a much prettier color! 

Rinsing the tie dye bucket hat under the tap

Rinse your bucket hat to wash out in bits of dye. 

Leaving the tie dye bucket hat to dry

Then leave it to dry before starting the mirror embroidery. 

Placing the mirror on the hat

Mirror work embroidery

Get your needle, thread, and mirrors out because we will start embroidering!

First, put your thread through your needle, and tie a knot at the end. Place your mirror on the DIY tie-dye bucket hat, and feed the needle through from under the hat. 

Securing the mirror with a cross-hatch stitch

You’re going to be doing a cross-hatch stitch to secure the mirror with the thread. 

Tip: If you want to get some of these types of mirrors, simply search online for “shisha mirrors” and make sure they are without glue. 

How to do mirror work embroidery

How to do shisha embroidery

Now that you have your crosshatch locked in place, you’ll be locking it in place by making a ring around the mirror. 

Sewing the mirror onto the hat

Put your needle through the nearest crosshatch stitch. 

Wrapping the thread around the needle

Wrap your thread around your needle once and pull the needle upward to tighten the stitch. 

Filling in the gapes around the mirror

Then, bring your needle back down. Repeat this process and fill in the gaps around the mirror. 

Mirror work embroidery

Here’s what the shisha embroidery looks like. 

Knotting the end of the embroidery thread

When you’re done, tie a knot through the bottom. Feel free to embroider as many mirrors as you like; this is your creation!

DIY tie dye bucket hat with mirror work embroidery

How to tie-dye a bucket hat and add shisha embroidery

How to tie-dye a bucket hat & add shisha embroidery

We are done! This tie-dye bucket hat DIY is looking festive and simply fabulous!

From tie-dying the hat to perfecting the mirror work embroidery, there are a whole lot of skills and ideas to take away from this tutorial. Thanks for joining me, and have fun! 

Suggested materials:
  • White bucket hat
  • Powder base tie dyes
  • Pot
See all materials

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