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How to Use Soda Ash for Tie Dye

Published Date September 21, 2020

If you’ve heard of tie dye, you’ve probably heard of soda ash too. If not, then we’re sure you’re now thinking, what is soda ash? And what does it have to do with tie dye? Soda ash is also known as sodium carbonate, but the most important thing you need to know about it is that soda ash can help prepare the fibers of your fabric to better absorb dyes and therefore produce brighter results. It’s often used as a presoak treatment before tie dyeing, but it’s not necessary when using Tulip One-Step Dyes because they already have soda ash mixed into the dyes. However, you can absolutely still use it! In this tutorial, Mikyla Creates shows you how to use soda ash for tie dye.

What you need:

Tulip Soda Ash

Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye Kit of choice

- White 100% cotton hoodie or item to tie dye 

- Bowl

- Measuring cups

- Stir spoon

- Disposable plastic surface cover

- Sealable plastic bag

Add warm water to mixing bowl

Add warm water to mixing bowl

Prepare 8 cups of warm water and add to a mixing bowl. Make sure the bowl is large enough to fit the item you are going to tie dye.

Add soda ash and stir

Add soda ash and stir

Add half of a 2-lb. bag of soda ash to the warm water and stir until thoroughly mixed.

Submerge fabric in soda ash

Submerge fabric in soda ash

Completely submerge your hoodie (or item you are tie dyeing) in the soda ash solution and allow it to soak for 30 minutes to an hour.

Fold and bind fabric

Fold and bind fabric

After your fabric is done soaking, remove it from the solution and wring it out, but do not rinse it. Place it on your covered work surface and fold and bind it using whatever tie-dye technique you like!

Apply dyes and let set

Apply dyes and let set

Mix your One-Step Dyes according to instructions, then apply to your soda ash pretreated fabric as normal. Once you have applied your dyes, cover your project with plastic or seal in a sealable plastic bag and let set for 6 to 8 hours or longer. Then rinse and launder according to instructions.

Soda ash tie-dye hoodie

Soda ash tie-dye hoodie

And that’s how to use soda ash for tie dye! Wasn’t that easy? Didn’t Mikyla’s hoodie turn out so bright and fun?!

How to use soda ash for tie dye

How to use soda ash for tie dye

Are you thinking of trying soda ash for your next tie-dye project? If you do, let us know how it turned out by tagging us on social @tulipcolorcrafts. Happy tie dyeing!


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