What is tie-dye?

Tie-dye is a current term invented in the mid-1960s in the United States. It is a technique of tying and dyeing a bit of fabric or cloth that is put together from knit or woven fabric, mostly cotton typically using bright colors. It is a modern genre of traditional dyeing techniques used in multi-cultures around the globe.

The steps of tie-dye mainly include folding, twisting, pleating, or crumpling fabric or a garment and binding with string or rubber bands, followed by the application of dyes. Unlike regular resist-dyeing techniques, tie-dye is distinguished using bright, saturated primary colors and bold ornamentation. These ornamentations, including the spiral, mandala, and peace sign, and the use of multiple bold colors.

6 Types of tie-die

  • Bandhej/bhandhani

Bandhani is a kind of tie-dye textile decorated by plucking off the cloth with the fingernails into many tiny bindings that form an allegorical design. The term Bandhani is derived from the Sanskrit verbal root bandh (“to bind, to tie”). Today, most Bandhani-making hubs are situated in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Sindh, Punjab region, and in Tamil Nadu where it is known as Sungudi.

The art of Bandhani is a highly skilled activity The primary color used in Bandana is yellow, red, blue, green, and black. Tie-dye can be used to create a broad variety of designs on fabric, from standard patterns such as the spiral, peace sign, diamond, and the marble effect to beautiful works of art.

The main colors used in Bandhana are natural. As Bandhani is a tie and dye process, dying is done by hand and hence best colors and combinations are possible.

  • Tarik

Javanese word for a resist-dye process in which out-line designs are stitched into a double-layered fabric material by utilizing small running stitches and tightly put together to avoid substantial penetration of the dye.

It forms a “mirror image,” or double rows of parallel lines of undyed dots.

It’s a traditional resist-dyeing method seen in various countries. Patterns are stitched on fabric usually cotton, the stitching is drawn up tightly, and then it’s dipped in dye.

  • Ikat

Ikat means “tie” in various Indonesian languages it means “to bind”. It is a dyeing technique to decorate textiles that increase resist dyeing on the yarns before dyeing and weaving the fabric. These steps may be done multiple times to result in elaborate, multi-colored patterns. That is, bundles of yarn are tightly wrapped together and then dyed as many times as is required to create the desired pattern.

  • Shibori

Shibori means to wring, squeeze, or press. It a Japanese resist dyeing technique that is done manually. It produces a variety of patterns on fabric.

Kanokoshibori is a technique usually seen in the West. It consists of binding particular sides of the fabric using thread. 

  • Adire

Adire textile is a resist-dyed cloth produced and worn by the Yoruba people of southwestern Nigeria in West Africa.

It means “tied and dyed” and was first applied to indigo-dyed material designed with resist patterns.

  • Mudmee tie-dye

Thailand is the birthplace of the Mudmee tie-dye technique. This method involves implementing various colors of dye straight to cotton. The fabric is frequently twisted or wrapped with string or rubber bands to fabricate patterns.

Mudmee is a particular contrast of tie-dye that is domestic to Thailand. It is a highly fancy activity and attributes of the technique are kept top secret to conserve the culture and practice of the community. Mudmee ornamentation is popular for rich vibrant colors. These colors are attained as the dyeing process is always done on black or pigmented fabric.

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