What Are the Directions for Rit Dye?

The basic process for dyeing an item with Rit dye involves filling a bucket with hot water and the appropriate amount of dye, dyeing the item and rinsing it. There are a number of factors that will vary by situation, including how much dye to use, how long to leave the item in the dye and whether to add any other products, such as vinegar or salt, to the dye.

First, you need to wash and dry the item to be dyed to get the best results. Cover your work surface with plastic so that you don't stain anything. Weigh your item so you know how much dye to use. One-half of a bottle of liquid dye or one box of powder dye will be sufficient for up to one pound of fabric.

Fill your plastic bucket with very hot water (about 140 degrees Fahrenheit). Use enough water to allow the fabric or item to move freely.

Make sure to wear rubber gloves and start by shaking the dye bottle or dissolving one package of powdered dye in 2 cups of very hot water. Add the dye to the water and stir until completely dissolved.

For cottons, dissolve 1 cup of salt in 2 cups of hot water and add it to the dye. For silk, wool or nylon, add 1 cup of white vinegar to the dye. Add a squirt of dishwashing liquid and stir the mixture well.

Test the dye color on a scrap piece of fabric to make sure it’s the shade you want. Add more dye or more water if the shade isn't quite right.

Wet the fabric or item with warm water and squeeze out the excess water. Add the item to your dye.

Stir constantly for 10 to 30 minutes. Make sure the item does not get tangled to prevent uneven dyeing. The longer the item is in the dye bath, the darker the color will be.

Remove the item from the dye bath and rinse thoroughly in warm water. Rinse with cooler water until the water runs clear.

Wash your item by hand in warm water with mild detergent and rinse in cool water. Hang the item to dry or run it through the dryer with like colors or an old towel. Be careful washing your newly dyed item the first few times. It may bleed, so only wash it with old towels or like colors to prevent ruining other items of clothing.