dying sneakers
  • Hi,

    I am new to dying and I want to dye a pair of cotton sneakers. I am worried about putting all of the dye in the washing machine. Since it is just one pair of sneakers, should I not use all of the dye? Also, how much salt should I put in?
  • To dye cotton shoes, it's better to paint the dye on directly, using a fiber reactive dye such as Procion MX dye. A tie-dye kit is perfect for this. See the instructions in this blog post I made: Tie Dyeing Converse Shoes.

    You can also use a fabric paint, such as Dye-Na-Flow, or markers, such as Tee Juice Markers.

    If your top concern is getting a perfectly smooth solid color, use Procion MX dyes in a five-gallon bucket, along with soda ash to set the dye, and a large quantity of salt to help the diluted dye find the fiber. Find a good recipe and follow it closely.

    I do not recommend that you use any hot water dye on shoes, such as Jacquard iDye or Rit All Purpose Dye. The hot water required for those dyes is bad for shoes, because it causes the glue to melt. Use Procion MX dye because it works at room temperature.

    -Paula