This tutorial uses the same method as my scrumple tie-dyed pants tutorial-just a different fold. It’s another one that’s simple enough for beginners, with not too many steps and easily reproducible results. If you’re interested in dye, I sell starter packs on my Etsy store, and if you would like the instructions I provide with the packs to see how they work, please contact me for a PDF copy (it’s free!)
To begin with, you need white or light pants, which are wholly or mostly made from natural fibres. I made these from 100% cotton pinwale cord. Soak these in the soda ash solution, as detailed in my instructions, and dry them completely.
Now, for the pleating. The width of your pleat will be the width of your stripes-here, i’m starting from the waistband and making regular pleats of around 8cms.
Once you’ve fully pleated them, secure the pleats firmly with rubber bands or string.
Mix up both colours of your dye and place in two separate containers, each large enough to accommodate the pants. You need enough dye to cover the bottom of your container to a depth of at least 2cm, and enough to saturate half of your pants. If in doubt, make more than you need-three cups of each should be plenty for any children’s pants/jeans. Dip the pants in. As they’re dry, they’ll suck up the dye quite quickly and it will continue to wick up the fabric even after you’ve removed it from the bath-for that reason do quick dips, and pull out and monitor the dye creep for 30 seconds before re-dipping.
When you’re satisfied that the first colour is halfway up or a little over, dip into the darker dye and let it wick up to the lighter colour. Because i’m doing variations on the same colour (light and dark purple) i’ve only mixed the one lot of dye at the lighter concentration, and i’ll then add more dye powder to the same bath for the darker half. This is more economical, and less mess in the end.
Leave to cure, in a plastic bag if need be, then rinse well, wash and dry.
And done! Place on wearer, and admire.
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