How to Make a Tie-Dye Heart Shirt

Every month Kathy Cano-Murillo, a.k.a. The Crafty Chica, dishes crafty tips and tricks in La Vida Crafty on Jackalope Ranch.

'Tis the season for red, white, and blue.

If you're looking to have some patriotic fun with your crafts in time for the fireworks, here is a cool folding technique using tie-dye, chalk, and rubber bands.

See also: How to Craft with Gold Leaf

Supplies: 100% cotton T-shirt, pre-washed, damp Fabric dye in red, light blue, and dark blue (you can find this at the craft store, I like the kind where you just add water and shake) Yellow chalk Rubber bands or zip ties Scissors Plastic table cover Baker's cooling rack

1. Pre-wash your shirt and, while it is damp, fold it in half lengthwise. Along the fold, draw half of a heart, really accentuate the dip and the bottom point. Make it a big juicy heart!

2. Starting at the bottom, accordion fold the shirt so that the yellow chalk lines up straight. This will make your heart outline crisp and defined. It might take a little practice. Go all the way around the shape of the heart until you've see that yellow straight line!

3. Carefully slide on the rubber band or zip tie. You want the folds to stay lined up, but you also want them tightly bound. After you add the rubber band, adjust the folds with your fingers to keep the yellow chalk line straight. Add a second rubber band if you feel it needs to be tighter.

4. Prepare the dye according to package directions. You can use squirt dye or spray dye. Line your work area with a plastic cover and put on plastic gloves so your hands don't get dye on them.

5. Add other rubber bands to the rest of the shirt for more design. If your shirt feels dry, run it under water and wring it out. You want it to be damp, but not totally soaking. Place the shirt on the baker's cooling rack. This is so the dye won't bleed and spread, the rack is raised just enough so the shirt won't touch the table.

6. Start by adding the red dye to the top heart area. Flip it over and add it to the other side as well until it is fully saturated. Keep the red away from the rubber band, about half an inch, so it won't bleed into the blue. Next, add the dark blue dye in the middle of each section on both sides. Next fill in the white areas with the light blue dye. Make sure it is nice and juicy! Cover with plastic wrap and let the shirt sit for six hours. Rinse in the sink until the water turns clear, then wash in the machine in cold water. Hang to dry.

If you want, you can cut off the neckline. And. . .

You can also cut within the heart shape, too. This is another shirt I made, my daughter had me snip it, and I love how it turned out!

Peace, love, and glitter!

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Kathy Cano-Murillo