Most of my friends and family know that I’m not a huge fan of anything even a little bit scary, so I work hard to make Halloween especially fun and light–not just for my kids but for scaredy-cat me.
We go for the Halloween silly.
We go for the Hallowen tricky.
We go for the Halloween treats.
This year, because I was offered the opportunity to get a little crafty and creative with Rit Dye, I decided to add a little bling to my ole Halloween getup while at the same time upcycling some old, rarely worn t-shirts.
With Maddy, Owen, and Cora right there helping me through the whole process, we all tried a little something new–dyeing!–and we all had a chance to get sneaky with science, flex our creative muscle, and feel good about making something cool out of old tee’s!
Here’s the skinny. . .
No-Sew, Not-So-Spooky, Totally Cute Halloween Scarf:
With only a few materials–and a bit of patience–we were able to create something beautiful and try something new along the way.
I’ll admit it: I was afraid of Rit Dye.
I hadn’t used it for years and years and years and years, but it was so easy and fun, I just may be slightly addicted.
When the box of dye arrived at our door, I had a ton of ideas.
Having worn the same Happy Halloween shirt for the last three or four years, I knew that I wanted to create something that I could wear. Here’s how we did it:
Our box of Rit Dye was calling to us. . .
1. We prepared the dye bath according to the package instructions. We dyed four shirts, so we created four dye baths, first heating the water (dye likes hot, hot water–140ºF/60ºC). We mixed about half a bottle of dye with about three cups of hot water.
I knew this was not an exact science and that the amount of water we used simply determined how dark our color would be.
We added one cup of salt and one tablespoon to our dye bath for a more intense color and one tablespoon of liquid laundry detergent to our mixture to promote even dyeing.
Maybe the salt should have come after the dye was mixed. . .
. . . in goes the detergent. . .
. . . and we added our dye!
2. We waited. Not so patiently, but we waited. We allowed our orange, yellow, and green dyes to sit for about 10 minutes, but I know now that we could have let them sit longer.
After they sat in the baths, we rinsed them and set them in the sun to dry, and the next day I did a small load of wash for each one; I knew we’d be wearing these so I didn’t want the dye to run onto our other clothes.
The orange and yellow were lighter because I didn’t want a crazy-bright rainbow scarf. I wanted a subtle, cool as a cat Halloween scarf.
Which is totally what we got.
Instructions suggest letting items sit in the dye bath for up to about an hour as long as the water remains hot; we let the purple shirt sit for exactly an hour, and the color rocked.
I love purple as a Halloween color because it’s a little bit on the funky side.
I wanted a super-awesome purple, and that’s what we got.
3. We cut the shirts into strips. Each strip was about one inch thick.
With the orange, yellow, green, and purple shirt each cut into strips, we had quite a few. I knew, though, that I wanted to make a scarf for Maddy, Cora, my mom, and me. So we needed a bunch.
I used a ruler as a gauge for the strips. . .
but that may not be necessary for the smarty-pants out there.
LOVE how our colors looked!
4. We pulled the strips apart. . . and stretched! Here’s where we really flexed our muscles. Each strip almost doubled in size lengthwise and shrunk in thickness due to the curl of the t-shirt fabric. And that’s what we wanted.
Owen loved this part, and he was a huge help for me, peeling the fabric apart and then knocking himself out in hysterics every time the strips went from short and fat to long and skinny.
My boy may have a future in scarf-making. . .
He’s a super helper,
and I’ll take him as an assistant any day.
5. We created the scarf! All we did was secure the long strands with an smaller strand (cut from the sleeve), twist them, and we had our scarf! I wanted a mix of Hallween-ish colors, and that’s what I had. I love it.
I did think that for Maddy and Cora, a fun Halloween embellishment would up the cool factor of the scarf, so we put our heads together. . .
First secure the strands. . . then wrap, and wear. Woot.
6. We rocked out some embellishments. Just by taking a few of the smaller strands–from the sleeves or cut from the top or front of the t-shirts and wrapping them around a few times, we had some really cute bling for our scarves.
I added a fab black daisy to mine, and to the girls I hot glued a Halloween foamie, which they totally loved.
Love the black daisy on my scarf. . .
. . . and adore the pumpkin and black cat for my sweet girls.
Want a closer look at the making of our Halloween Scarves? Take a look:
And that’s it! Just a fun, no-sew, not-at-all-spooky, totally cute Halloween scarf for a few of my favorite ladies.
What I love about these is that they’re adaptable–because there’s no sewing involved–and because the strands are only tied together, we can continue to wear these for other holidays.
My plan? Simple. It involves a wee bit of dyeing and a whole lot of scarf-wearing over the next few months:
- dye red and darker green shirts for Christmas scarves;
- an array of dyed blues for ringing in the New Year;
- lots of greens with a few golds for St. Patty’s Day;
- dye some pinks and light purple for Valentine’s Day scarves;
- create a few new ’embellished’ ties for springtime . . .the possibilities are endless.
Talk about a cool, New For Us Friday activity for this week!
Want a few more fun halloween party ideas?
- halloween class party
- more halloween class party ideas
- GHOST bingo!
- spider web craft
- pumpkin match
- halloween word search
- halloween ghost cookies
- boo! your neighbors
- alternatives to halloween candy
- halloween joke notes
- halloween learning
- hats, cats, and pumpkin grid game
- dinner in a pumpkin
- candy experiments
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