So, Antho and I recently tried out ice dyeing for the first time. We’ve been experimenting with tie-dying fabrics and creating various designs since last summer (which, if you’re curious, you can find over on our Storenvy shop) but this was our first experiment with ice dye and I made sure to document the process.
Unlike regular tie-dye where you mix the dyes with water prior to soaking the fabrics, ice-dye relies on the melting ice to moisten the dye. This means the dyes gradually drip down into the fabric, creating a beautiful watercolor effect.
You can choose to tie the shirts into various shapes as you would with regular tie-dye, or you could simply lay them out. The most important thing is to completely cover the cloth with ice so that it will get thoroughly saturated by the dies.
With our ice-dye project, we experimented. Some shirts got laid out, others were twisted, some spiraled, some shibori’d. In the end we had a wide array of gorgeous shirts, which makes me very excited to try this again!!
To begin, assemble your supplies! This isn’t our first tango with tie-dye so we had some odds and ends from previous kits combined with additional packets of dye powder and some soda ash from our nearby crafts store. Some white cotton shirts, a few plastic tarps (or garbage bags) and rubber bands are essential while twine and/or a pole are optional. We had a wooden rod left from a previous closet project that worked really well for a shibori-inspired design. Since this is an ice-dye project, get a couple of big bags of ice or make your own.