A fun and messy time

Table of Contents

My son has never been a big fan of arts and crafts, but he always seemed to enjoy making tie-dye shirts during summer camp. So when I had the opportunity to review the Doodle Hog Tie-Dye Party Kit, I accepted, figuring it would be a great way to replicate some of the fun experiences from past summers.

I should mention here that I have never dyed any article of clothing and had no idea what I was getting myself into. I figured you just add a bit of color, rinse the items out, and you’re done. (If you, dear reader, have tie-dyed anything yourself, you’re probably already shaking your head at my naivete.) 

That said, I’ll share with you what’s included in the kit, the dyeing process, and my thoughts on the overall experience.

Tie Dye kit for Kids


What is the Doodle Hog Tie-Dye Party Kit?

The kit is also available in 24-pack and 36-pack sizes.

The kit is also available in 24-pack and 36-pack sizes.

Sandra Ebejer

The Doodle Hog tie-dye party kit, which is currently $13.45 on Amazon, is advertised as a way to “turn any natural fabric item from Blank to Swank!” It comes with 12 color dyes in easy-squeeze bottles, soda ash, 9 pairs of gloves, 60 rubber bands, and an instruction guide. (The kit is also available in 24-pack and 36-pack sizes.)

Doodlehog Easy Tie Dye Party Kit for Kids


Tie Dye Party Kit: Rainbow Classic


As implied in the kit’s name, it’s meant to be for larger groups and can dye up to 30 medium-sized kids’ T-shirts. My intention was to have a mini-party with my son and a few friends. I envisioned setting up in the backyard and letting them dye clothing to their hearts’ content. 

Alas, the week we were scheduled to do this my son wasn’t feeling well and it rained for a few days. So, we decided to have a Mommy/son party indoors instead.

The Step-By-Step Process

The directions for the kit are very easy to follow. Not only do they describe how to use the ingredients but they provide instructions on different types of dyeing techniques — stripes, ombre, and spirals, to name a few.

  1. The first step in the process is the ash soak. It’s easy: dump the included bags of soda ash into a gallon of warm water and soak the fabrics for up to an hour. I’d bought a package of plain white t-shirts for the project, so I just shoved all of them into the bucket of ash and water and let them sit while I prepared the dye.
  2. Add warm water into each bottle of dye, replace the cap, and shake until mixed. This sounds easy enough, but as soon as I took a bottle of dye out of the box—before I’d even opened it to add water—I got dye all over my fingers. I put gloves on for the remainder of the bottle prep, but the gloves made it hard to get the caps on and off. I was still only in the preparation phase, and things were already getting messy.
  3. Once the hour was up, I took the t-shirts out of the soda ash soak. Following the directions, I kept my gloves on, wrung out the shirts, then moved them over to the table for dyeing.
  4. We followed the instructions to dye two shirts. We had five total, but my son was done after the first two. And frankly, so was I. We did one shirt using the “Spill-the-Tea Spiral” technique and the other using the “Sic Stripes, Bruh” method. They were both easy enough to do but the dyes still got all over the place. (Thankfully the plastic bags protected my kitchen table.) 
  5. The instructions say to put the dyed fabric into a sealed plastic bag or cover it with plastic wrap to keep the items damp while the dye processes. I did both. I wrapped each item in plastic wrap (another messy process) and then put each into its own Ziploc bag. I let them sit for a full 24 hours before rinsing.
  6. The next day, I took the shirts out of the plastic, removed the rubber bands, and rinsed the shirts in cold water (with gloves on). According to the instructions, once the water runs clear you can “wash fabrics in a washing machine for a full normal cycle with like colors.” Since the only things I needed to launder that day were the shirts, I put them all into the washing machines—the two dyed shirts and the three plain ones (which were still damp from the prior day’s ash soak)—and washed them on the cold water setting. All three plain shirts came out bright pink. Obviously, I didn’t wash the dyed shirts with “like colors,” but the fact that the color ran as much as it did makes me happy I didn’t wash the shirts with any other clothing.

This isn’t part of the instructions, but I’ll tell you now that your dyeing area should be well covered in order to not stain any furniture. I spread out plastic garbage bags, which was helpful when it came time to clean up. Just know that the dye can get everywhere and it doesn’t come off easily.

I should note that a big complaint for this product on Amazon is that the color never fully rinses out. In other words, the color continues to run after many washes. I don’t know if that will happen for us, but I don’t plan to wash these shirts with regular loads of laundry until I’m sure they won’t stain our other clothing.

The Final Verdict

My son loved this kit, but be warned: it will cause a mess!

My son loved this kit, but be warned: it will cause a mess!

Sandra Ebejer

The shirts came out great. My son is really happy with them, and I think he enjoyed making them. That said, I won’t do another tie-dye project.