Clouds Tie Dye
  • Hi, do you know how to dye what I would call a 'clouds' pattern, can't find how to do it online anywhere! Here are some links to what I mean:$(KGrHqNHJDcFHul-t1mtBR-Wy!rWfg~~60_35.JPG

    The blue bit on this one is a really good example:

    American Apparel do a 'cloudy oxford' shirt (2nd link), but it's $78, and I want to try make a clouds shirt a bit cheaper myself;-)

    Thank you:-),

  • Hi Thomas,

    That design is best achieved using the low-water method of dyeing. Check out this photo for what the fabric looks like in the container when using lwi method:
    It really is one of the easiest methods for achieving beautiful fabrics EVERY time.

    hope this helps
  • Hi Annette, thanks for getting back to me. You just mean tub dyeing with very little water yeah? I don't get how you get the white variation though, in the picture it just looks like you've kind of scrunched it up randomly. Is that all there is to it? :-)

    Thanks again,

  • Yep, pretty much that's all there is to it. The tighter the scrunch the the more tone variation and to get the white bits keep the dye level low enough that some the fabric is well above the dye line.

  • OK thanks, that helps. If I can get that to work for me you may have just saved me like $50 :-)
  • I love this pattern, especially on jeans, but I was always anxious of dying heavier fabrics... Do you have any advice on how to do it properly?
  • Hi Mr. Claims,

    First, I'd suggest getting a couple of pairs of jeans from your local thrift store to practice on. Make sure they are cotton and lighter, faded blue jeans (if that's what you plan to work with) are going to give you the best results. White jeans will give you the most optimal results.
    To use the low-water immersion method you'll need a tub or bucket that will allow you to scrunch the jeans together and hold that scrunch - I use a 12" x 16" storage tub for something this size - wet the jeans and laying them flat over the pan, scrunch them in from the middle until you've pulled them completely into the pan. Don't fold the jeans over on themselves.
    Pre-mix one cup of soda ash with one gallon of water to have on hand. Mix your dyes - I use a tablespoon of dye to 8 ounces of water. Make sure your dyes a thoroughly mixed or you will end up with spots of intense color on the garment. Pour the dye over the jeans - they will not be covered - press the fabric down for more gentle color transitions or just let it be if your want more distinct clouds. Let the dye and jeans sit for about 20 minutes then add a cup to a cup and a half of the soda ash mix. Press the fabric down one more time to ensure that all the dye and jeans have been exposed to the soda ash and let that mix sit for one to four hours.
    Rinse well with warm to hot water using Snythropol or another detergent until the water runs mostly clear. Wash jeans in hot water with your normal detergent and you are good to go.

    hope this helps