How to Dye a Shirt One Color

by Sara Cantu ; Updated September 28, 2017

A few simple steps will transform a plain, white shirt into something trendy.

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Clothing can be quite the expense, so it's good to have options to completely transform a garment to get new use out of it long after you've decided you are no longer interested in wearing it. Save money by taking simple steps to revitalizing the unused clothing already hanging in your closet. For instance, simply dying a shirt completely alters its capabilities and style potential, and with a few simple tasks, plenty of garments can be made into something completely different and unique. Follow these next steps to dye a shirt one color.

Dyeing a Shirt

Determine whether your shirt will work well with dye. Cotton and most other natural fabrics should qualify.

Carefully read the mixing instructions on your package of dye and mix accordingly into a steel bucket or other bucket that you won't mind getting stained. Most dyes will require hot water, and some will suggest adding salt to the dye and water when mixing.

Wearing gloves, place your shirt in the bucket of dye and stir to soak until every inch of the shirt is evenly drenched in dye. Determine how long the instructions suggest soaking the shirt.

Remove the shirt from the dye bucket after the allotted time and thoroughly rinse the garment until the water runs clear. A steel sink is a good option, unlike porcelain sinks and bathtubs that might get stained in the process and prove difficult to clean.

Thoroughly hand or machine wash your garment after it's been rinsed to ensure that no leftover dye remains. When using a washing machine, be sure that your dyed shirt is separated from other loads to ensure that no garments are ruined in the process.


  • Prepare properly when taking on a potentially messy project like dyeing. Wear old clothing or an apron and clear a path so not to drip any dye on carpets, etc.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages /Polka Dot/Getty Images

About the Author

Sara Cantu has been writing fashion and lifestyle articles since 2009. As a fashion stylist, writer and blogger, she has been published in “Lady Couture” magazine and “RGV” magazine. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from The University of Texas - Pan American.