Easy Tie Dye Flannel Shirt Tutorial

Sew Much 2 Wear
by Sew Much 2 Wear
5 Materials
1 Hour

Today, we’re going to add a little pop of color to a flannel shirt. The easiest way to do this is to pick a shirt with plenty of white or light space. So, grab a shirt and let’s get started with this tie dye flannel shirt tutorial.

This post was transcribed by a member of the Upstyle editorial team from the original UpstyleTV episode.

Tools and materials:  

  • Flannel shirt
  • Ash soda powder
  • Fabric dye
  • Strainer
  • Washing machine
Soaking the flannel shirt

1. Soak the shirt in soda ash powder

Start by soaking the shirt in a mixture of water and soda ash powder for about 15 minutes. This step is crucial as it prepares the shirt to absorb the most dye later on.

Squeezing out the water

2. Squeeze out the water

After allowing the shirt to soak, squeeze as much moisture out of the shirt as possible. 

Mixing the dye

3. Mix the dye

I’m using a 100% cotton shirt so I will use fiber-reactive dye powder that’s formulated to work on natural fibers.

I mixed about a teaspoon of dye with water in a little squeeze bottle, mixing them thoroughly to break up any clumps of powder. 

Twisting flannel shirt inward

4. Twist shirt inward

I don’t want any white space on the shirt so I’m not going to use rubber bands to secure it.

To do tie dye without rubber bands, simply spiral the entire shirt inward from one central point. 

Flannel shirt in strainer

5: Place shirt in strainer

Place your twisted shirt into an old kitchen strainer that you no longer use for food.

This is going to allow the dye to drain out from under the piece, preventing it from sitting too long and making the back of the shirt look muddy.  

Tye dying flannel shirt

6. Add the dye

Once everything was in place, I randomly squirted my lighter colored dye onto the shirt first. Then, I added in the darker tones to fill on any blank spots. 

Flannel soaks up a lot of dye so be sure you don’t miss any spots. Then, I left the shirt to sit for approximately 6 hours.

Rinsing shirt

7. Rinsing the shirt

When it was time to rinse, I started with cold water. I kept the shirt in the strainer so the excess dye would flow away from the shirt, helping to prevent muddiness.

Once the water runs clear, you should swap to rinsing the shirt with hot water. Once the hot water runs clear, you can go ahead and pop the shirt into your washing machine and use warm or hot water to set the dye. 

Completed tie dye flannel shirt

Tie dye flannel shirt

Let the shirt dry, and there you have it! The finished tie dye flannel shirt. It’s cozy, warm, and has plenty of character.

If you enjoyed this upcycled flannel shirt tutorial, let me know in the comments below!

Suggested materials:
  • Flannel shirt
  • Ash soda powder
  • Fabric dye
See all materials

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