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How to dye your clothes at home with Rit Dye

Here are instructions below on how to use the Rit dye on your clothing...

  1. To determine how much dye is needed, weigh the item to be dyed on a food scale or estimate the weight. As a general guideline, one liquid bottle / two powder packages dyes 2 pounds of dry fabric. If you are trying to achieve a very bold color, then double the dye quantity.

  2. Fiber content and weight affect how color appears. If you are in doubt as to whether your fabric will accept dye or achieve the color you want, we recommend testing a swatch first.

  3. Before dyeing, remove any visible stains on the garment. This will help achieve uniform color results when dyeing. Pre-wash item in warm, soapy water without any fabric softener. This helps to remove any finishes that may interfere with dye absorption.

  4. Cover work area with plastic table cover and have paper towels handy to protect against any possible spills.

  5. Wear rubber gloves to protect hands from getting stained and to insulate them when working with hot water.

  6. Fill a plastic container or stainless steel sink with enough water for the fabric to move freely. We recommend using 3 gallons of water for every pound of fabric. The water should ideally be 140°F . If tap water is not hot enough, heat water on the stove and add to the dyebath.

  7. To enhance the color: (1) add 1 cup of salt when dyeing fabrics containing cotton, rayon, ramie or linen; (2) add 1 cup of vinegar when dyeing fabrics containing nylon, silk or wool.

  8. Add 1 teaspoon of dish detergent to help promote level dyeing.

  9. If using powder dye, dissolve thoroughly in 2 cups of very hot water.

  10. Pour dissolved powder dye or well-shaken liquid dye into dyebath and mix well.

  11. Test color by dipping a paper towel into the dyebath. If color is too light, add more dye. If color is too dark, add more water.

  12. Wet the fabric, squeeze out any excess water and add it to the dyebath.

  13. Stir slowly and continuously. The first 10 minutes are the most critical. Stirring helps to ensure an even color with no splotches.

  14. Item can remain in dyebath from 10 minutes up to one hour with stirring. If dyeing a polyester cotton blend, keep the fabric in the dyebath for at least 30 minutes to ensure that the color takes fully. Nylon tends to dye very quickly and much darker than other fibers so the actual time needed in the dyebath is less.

  15. When desired color is achieved, remove from dyebath. Fabric will look darker when wet and will dry lighter.

  16. To enhance the color and reduce color bleeding, use Rit ColorStay Dye Fixative immediately after dyeing and before washing, following these instructions.

  17. Rinse in cool water until rinse water begins to run clear.

  18. Wash in warm water with a mild detergent, rinse and dry.


For best results, we recommend using the stovetop method to maintain an almost boiling temperature. 

However, you can also use Color Remover with a washing machine or with the sink or bucket method, but you may get less reliable results.

Use Color Remover in a well–ventilated area. Open any windows and turn on a fan if you have one.

  1. Pre-wash item in warm, soapy water.

  2. Fill a stainless steel pot with enough water for the fabric to move freely. Cover pot and heat water on stove top to just below boiling (or around 200°F).LAVI

  3. When water begins to simmer, add one packet of Color Remover. Mix well.

  4. Keep temperature at a low simmer.

  5. Wet the item you are going to be removing the color from and add it to the bath.

  6. Stir occasionally. Some fabrics will lose their color in as fast as 10 minutes, others can take up to 20 minutes. Once your garment turns white or off-white, you can remove it from the bath.

  7. Rinse in warm water and then gradually cool water until rinse water begins to run clear.

  8. Wash in warm water with a mild detergent, rinse and dry.

  9. Item is now ready to be dyed.

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