Make Red White & Blue 4th of July Tie Dye T-Shirts

Let’s tie dye shirts today in red, white and blue! This is great for 4th of July, but also other patriotic events or everyday.

The 4th of July is a great time to show off our American pride and show our love  for those that serve our country. We are using a sugar tie dye technique that can be customized for a million uses. We just happen to be making 4th of July Tie Dyed T-shirts for the entire family.

4th of July Tie-Dye T-Shirts

Sugar tie dye technique is a fun way to tie-dye anything. Aside from t-shirts, you can also use this method to tie-dye shorts, dresses, and so much more!

Make Patriotic Tie Dye Shirts Using Sugar Technique

This is surprisingly easy and can be done with kids of all ages. Younger kids will need a lot of assistance and you may want to do this on the back porch or bathtub. Older kids will get strategic about tie dye patterns and how different folds and twists affect the final tie dye shirt.

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Supplies Needed

Directions to Make 4th of July Tie Dye T-Shirts

Step 1

Start by prepping the surface you are working on by laying down newspaper. I suggest doing this craft outside and covering the table you are working on with several layers of newspaper. Next, make sure you and your child are wearing old clothes you don’t mind getting dye on. Anything the dye touches, will be stained.

Step by step images of how to make a patriotic tie dye t-shirt for the 4th of July starting with setting up the t-shirt, putting the template in place, using the sugar for technique, then spraying the tie dye and using rubber bands
Here are the steps to creating your own 4th of July tie dye shirt!

Step 2

Now it’s time to get your t-shirts ready. Lay the t-shirt flat out on the newspaper surface and place the piece of cardboard inside of the shirt. This helps the dye from soaking the other side.

Step 3

Take a paper towel and soak it into the water. Wring it out so the paper towel is damp. Then start applying pressure onto the area you plan to place a design on the t-shirt. You just want the t-shirt to be damp and not soaked.

Step 4

Next, take your template (we used a wooden peace sign) and place it onto your t-shirt.

Using a spoon (or your hands) carefully place sugar on the outer edge of the wooden template. You basically want to be left with an outline of the template.

Carefully lift the template without disturbing any of the sugar.

Step 5

Put your gloves on and take one of your dye spray bottles and shake well. We used a combination of light blue, dark blue, and red but you can use whatever color you like.

Carefully spray on top of the sugar and inside of the area where the template was. This will give a very cool effect once it’s done!

4th of July Tie-Dye T-Shirts - sugar tie dye technique where the sugar is, the dye does not attach
Anywhere the sugar is, the dye will not “stick” leaving that area the shirt color.

If you want to add a bit more color, you can tie random sections of the shirt using rubber bands (be careful not to disturb the middle where the sugar is). Once tied, you can spray using other colors. These will give sort of a firework effect once dried.

Step 6

Allow to dry for 6-8 hours. Once dry, carefully dust away the sugar and remove any rubber bands you may have placed on the t-shirt.

If you use the SEI Tumble Dry, this type of dye needs to be heat set (if you buy a different kind, follow the directions on that). Basically you dry on a high heat in the dryer or use an iron to heat set the dye. Once heat set, you can wash and dry as normal.

4th of July Tie-Dye T-Shirts finished and child wearing the new t-shirt made homemade in the backyard
Let’s wear our 4th of July tie dye t-shirts!

Allow your kids to wear their new 4th of July Tie-Dye T-shirts! See, wasn’t that fun?

Notes on Sugar Tie Dye

I really loved using sugar in this project because it was really different than many of the tie-dye projects you see on the web. The sugar gives a really neat subtle effect on the shirt. The best part is, you can use this technique to draw out your own designs and even place it randomly on your project. In the end, you will have a project you made by yourself and it’s going to look awesome!

If you are interested in seeing some of our other sugar tie dye projects, check it out!

More Patriotic Shirt Ideas for Kids

We have several other ideas of ways you can tie dye in red white and blue for the perfect fourth of July shirt, Memorial Day shirt…anytime shirt!

Watch Our Video Tutorial to Tie Dye Red White & Blue

American Flag Homemade Shirt

We have also created this cool homemade American Flag shirt that is perfect for kids of all ages & adults too! There are so many fun ideas you can do with paint, dye and red, white & blue!

More Tie Dye from Kids Activities Blog

How did your 4th of July tie dye shirt turn out?