Washing Machine Dyeing Methods

Use any top or front load washing machine to dye a variety of clothing and large fabric items. Delicate or knit garments may be better suited for hand dyeing techniques. Use the garment special care instructions as an indication if machine dyeing is ideal for your knit item. Proceed with caution, for best dyeing results never overload the machine. *Rubber or plastic parts may become tinted after dyeing, this will not effect your laundry but may be permanent.

What Can Be Dyed In Washing Machine

  1. Smaller load: underwear, scarves, shrugs & wraps, socks & tights, short or long sleeve T-shirts, button-down shirts & light vests, pillow slips, table runners 
  2. Medium load:  sweats & denim, skirts, dresses & pants, tablecloths, heavier denim jackets, sweaters, hand towel sets, non rubber backed mats, smaller sheet sets, heavy robes 
  3. Largest load: large slipcovers, larger sheet sets, duvet covers, bedspreads *Large/bulky material: is not ideal for front load washing machines. **Bulky/long fabric: may need to be manually redistributed mid-cycle in top-loader machines.

Large Load Note: Never dye beyond 8 pounds of material (or use more than 8 boxes of Tintex) at a time in your machine. Pre-dissolve dye in hot water before adding to your machine. Use a hot water wash cycle of minimum 30 minutes (before the rinse starts); darker or brighter dye colours may need up to 60 minutes. If needed, you may manually extend the wash cycle.

        Washing Machine Dyeing Materials:

        • Fabric (do not overload machine)
        • Tintex Fabric Dye (6 - 8 Tintex boxes maximum per project)
        • Measuring cup
        • Rubber or plastic gloves
        • Liquid laundry detergent of choice
        • Chorine bleach of choice
        • Old fabric or towel (for washing & cleaning machine after dyeing)
        • Optional: iron

            Front-Load Washing Machine Dyeing: 

            Long/Bulky Fabric Note: Proceed with caution when using a front-loading machine for dyeing large or long items. Tangled fabric creates uneven and blotchy results. Instead consider using a top-loading washing machine (if needed you may manually untwist mid-cycle) or try hand dyeing fabric that is not suitable for a front loader.

            washing machine method
            1. Start with a clean washing machine (including detergent dispenser).
            2. Have washed, but still damp fabric (avoid fabric softener) set unfolded into the bottom of the machine.
            3. Thoroughly dissolve Tintex powder with 2 cups (500ml) of hot water (Avoid breathing dust. Use with adequate ventilation). Pour the Tintex dye solution into your machine dispenser (where the detergent usually goes). Immediately after Tintex has been added, carefully flush out your dispenser with another 4 cups of hot water.
            4. Pour the dye solution into dispenser, after Tintex has been added, carefully flush out your dispenser with another 4 cups (1 liter) of hot water.
            5. Use the hottest cycle available that is a minimum of 30 minutes (darker or brighter colours may need longer dyeing times of up to 60 minutes).
            6. After dyeing cycle, wash fabric as usual or in warm water with detergent. 
            7. Remove the fabric from the machine and allow to air-dry until damp.
            8. Optional: Iron the damp fabric on a low setting to lock in the colour.
            9. Immediately clean the machine to prevent staining by running another hot water cycle (use: detergent, 1-2 cups (250ml to 500ml) of bleach and some old scrap fabrics to absorb dye). If needed, use an additional 4 cups (1 liter) of boiling water into the dispenser to clear any dye solution residue. *Even after cleaning plastic or rubber areas may be permanently tinted from dyeing.

            Top-Load Washing Machine Dyeing:

            1. Start with washed fabric (avoid fabric softener) and keep damp.
            2. Make sure washing machine is clean.
            3. Fabric needs to be dyed for a minimum of 30 minutes. Darker or brighter colours may need cycles of up to 60 minutes before the rinse cycle starts. If needed, manually extend the by resetting before the rinse begins. 
            4. Use hottest water cycle available and fill machine so water completely cover your material.
            5. Thoroughly dissolve Tintex powder with 2 cups (500ml) of hot water (Avoid breathing dust. Use with adequate ventilation).
            6. Wear gloves to thoroughly distribute all of the pre-dissolved Tintex dyeing solution to the hot water in the machine.
            7. Add your damp fabric after the dye has been completely mixed in.
            8. Optionally large items like curtains or sheets may need to be manually detangled mid-cycle with gloves.
            9. Run a cold water rinse to discard extra dye solution.
            10. After dyeing, you may wash fabric as usual with your laundry detergent.
            11. Remove the fabric from the machine and allow to air-dry until damp.
            12. Optional: iron the damp fabric on a low setting to lock in the colour.
            13. Immediately clean your machine to avoid staining by running another hot water cycle with detergent, 1-2 cups (250ml to 500ml) of bleach and an old towel or other fabric to absorb dye. If needed, use an additional 4 cups (1liter) of boiling water into the dispenser to clear any dye solution residue. *Even after cleaning plastic or rubber areas may be permanently tinted from dyeing.