I'll start by saying that I'm extremely grateful to have a safe home to stay in while I practice social distancing. The CDC guideline isn't easy to get used to, but overall, making the change to my day-to-day life isn't impossible.
That said, finding new things to do outside of my routine has been a bit of a challenge.
My former schedule was reasonably straightforward. I would wake up in the morning, go to the gym, leave for work and go about my day. After my work day, I relied on the hustle and bustle of the city to keep me busy. But now that I can't go to the movies or go shopping at my favorite stores, I'm left with a lot of free time and the opportunity to find new things to do.
On my search activities to make the day a little less bland, I stumbled upon an old tie-dye kit and dusted it off in hopes that it would add some fun to my schedule.
I originally purchased the Tulip tie dye kit for a school event a few years back. I've always been a crafty person and creating homemade items was never out of the ordinary.
Though I never anticipated using the kit again, the past couple weeks have been slow (to say the very least) and I figured I could revisit my craft-filled past with this top-rated kit.
Tulip Tie Dye Kit
The Tulip Tie Dye Kit is also available at Amazon but is currently out of stock. Keep checking the site for updates.
According to the brand, the kit can dye up to 30 projects, so there was still a lot left after the first use. It contains five dyes, five refill dye packets, four pairs of protective gloves and 40 rubber bands.
The five-color kit comes in multiple styles, including rainbow, carousel, ultimate, luau, mermaid and shibori. I opted for the vibrant rainbow option that includes bottles filled with yellow, red, purple, blue and green.
Before starting any project, I made sure to have all my supplies on hand. Luckily, the kit contains almost everything you'll need, but I like to lay down old newspapers to make sure I don't get any dye on my furniture.
I also like to dye comfortable clothing items that I can wear around my house — and the cotton-blend Hanes sweatshirt is my number one choice for any apparel-related project.
I've tie-dyed a few things in the past, and a good rule of thumb is always to read and follow the instructions. I start by choosing the colors I want to use and add water to the "fill line" on each of the bottles. Next, I tie up my sweatshirt with rubber bands and soak it thoroughly with water.
When everything is prepped, and I clear my workspace of any non-essential items, I apply the dye to the sweatshirt according to my pattern preference. This step is easy since the kit comes with a book of designs to follow. The box doesn't tell you how much dye to apply, but I recommend adding a generous amount to make sure the piece is fully saturated.
After applying my color, I wrap it up in a plastic bag and let it sit for about six to eight hours. I'll be the first to say that it's extremely tempting to reveal the design after an hour or so, but letting it sit will ensure the color turns out bold and bright.
Finally, when my design is ready to be unveiled, I snip the rubber bands with a pair of scissors and lay my project flat to see the finished product. The only additional step is to throw it in the wash on a cold-cycle to make sure no excess dye is left.
From start to finish, the entire process is fairly easy. The dyes can get messy, but if you take proper precautions, you can minimize the chances of a sloppy project.
You also can't beat the price: For just around $20, the Tulip Tie Dye kit has allowed me to brighten up multiple pieces of tie-dyed clothing, which makes keeping up with the retro trend a whole lot more affordable.
I might be in my mid-twenties, but this project is awesome for the entire family. My mother, a nanny of four young girls, regularly dyes shirts and shorts with her kids. In college, I witnessed people having dye parties in their backyard!
Though I can't invite anyone over to do a tie-dye project at this point in time, I find it extremely soothing to do it on my own. Already, I've dyed three separate projects — and with the elongated stay-at-home order, I certainly plan on adding more to my collection.
Check out other family-friendly tie dye kits
Swirl & Style Tie-Dye Studio Activity Kit
This kit makes creating trendy tie dye projects simple and easy for kids ages six and up. It comes with six bright colors, a self-contained orb and a design booklet.
Sei Tumble Dye Tie-Dye Kit
Create vibrant projects with this tumble dye tie-dye kit. It comes pre-mixed, which is perfect for group activities and can dye up to 12 T-shirts.
Tulip Large Marbling Fabric Dye Kit
Bring some color and dimension to your shoes with this marbling dye kit. It comes with three pastel colors that are sure to make your kicks pop.
For more recommendations, check out:
- Feeling stressed? An adult coloring book can help you relax
- 18 stress-relief products you need in your life
- This Easter egg kit is selling out everywhere — here's why everyone loves it
To discover more deals, shopping tips and budget-friendly product recommendations, download the new TODAY app and subscribe to our Stuff We Love newsletter!