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Tie-dye question - too difficult for party activity?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

My DD who is turning 5 wants to have a messy rainbow party. We will obviously let everyone know to wear old clothes, but I was thinking about providing a basic white tee for all the kids to use as a smock, and then the last activity could be tie-dying their shirts, which could double as a favor. I'm just wondering if the logistics would be too difficult - since it would be the end of the party, I'm assuming we would either have to send wet shirt home with the kids (and then, would they be able to throw the shirt in the regular wash? I definitely don't want to make extra work for anyone!) or dry them & then get them to the kids. It wouldn't be a big deal for the kids at her school (well, other than making sure each kid got the right shirt!), but she also wants to invite a couple kids we don't see very often, though I guess that would give us good excuses for playdates. Anyway, I'm just hoping for advice from someone who has actually done it!

post #2 of 5

If you have everything set up before hand, I don't think it would be difficult. We vacation at a place with a craft center and have sometimes brought the dyed stuff home wet since  we were leaving before they could finish. So basically you let it sit for 24 hours and then rinse a lot and wash once by itself and then it is good. 


Dharma Trading has kits which have everything but the shirts in them. I saw some kits in Joanns the other day too.


The only thing that would concern me is my daughter is allergic to latex so if any of the kids have that issue you would need latex-free gloves and something else to tie with.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks! Especially for the reminder about latex allergies, since I probably wouldn't have thought of that. I'm still not sure if we're going to do it, but it's still on the table!

post #4 of 5
We did sharpie tie dyeing at my kid's preschool.

Basically you draw with sharpies and then spray or drop rubbing alcohol on it and spreads like tie dye.

It was a huge hit. Super easy. Low mess. And the shirts dry fast because the rubbing alcohol evaporates.

Outside or windows open is the best (it does get a little fume-y with all the rubbing alcohol).

post #5 of 5
I took DS to a tie-dye party and... it was really messy. The mom spread plastic bags over the kitchen floor but still had to scrub it down -- immediately, so it wouldn't stain, so she struggled with doing that plus showing out their guests at the same time. There were only about 5 kids at the party, and we used the kits with squirt bottles. Maybe there is another, neater method out there. The mom is usually pretty laid-back about messes, & always doing something creative, but she said NEVER AGAIN to the tie-dye, at least not indoors! lol

On the other hand, DS had a great time, loves wearing the shirt he made all by himself, and it wasn't all that messy/inconvenient bringing it home and rinsing/washing/drying. The mom had plastic bags for them to carry their shirts home in (double-bagged). Might be nice to print up brief rinsing/washing instructions for the kids to bring home.

I wouldn't have the kids wear the shirts as smocks first though... well, you could, but it seems counter-intuitive to have them take OFF their smocks for the messiest project! Plus messy shirts might not dye well. Maybe just have extra playclothes handy if you have some, in case someone forgets to wear old clothes?
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