Tie-dye is all grown up and back in our homes. Long gone are the rainbow hues that are admittedly more boho than chic. Here to stay are the subdued, intricate, and unique patterns of shibori dying.
Call it the older, cooler sibling of the classic childhood tie-dye projects, or just call it the new way to decorate your home. Either way, we think shibori is the dip-dye style that is here to stay.
What is exactly is shibori?
Shibori itself isn’t a new concept by any means. In fact, historians say the earliest known piece of shibori fabric was made back in the 8th century in Japan. There are several different methods and techniques for shibori itself, but generally, shibori is different from your typical tie-dye as the patterns are created by binding then pressing pieces of wood together over folded cloth. It traditionally uses indigo dye, which mesmerizingly starts off green and oxides to indigo right before your eyes. This creates shibori’s characteristic deep blue color.
Why is it so popular?
Shibori has become a popular pattern over the last several years, popping up on catwalks, Pinterest, and in Urban Outfitters. The subdued blue feels more mature that tie-dyes bright colored counterparts, and gives the dazzling patterns more of a spotlight. Subtle but stunning, it’s home design’s follow-up to ikat.
Looking to get started with shibori dying, but not sure where to start? I found my favorite DIYs for this cloth-craft, all of which will give you a new piece to add to your home (and major bragging rights in front of your friends).
Summer DIY Projects with Shibori
The king of all shibori tutorials on the internet come from this blog, with an endless number of ways to twist, pinch, scrunch and tie eye-catching dye designs for any of the below projects.
from Room for Tuesday
This intricate and interesting how-to shows us the many ways to create shibori patterns with things already laying around the house.
from Altard State
Go big or go home. Or go to college, or a new apartment, because this DIY wall hanging is perfect for transforming a wall without paint or gaping holes.
from the nest
The nest blog used this geometric-meets-bohemian tablecloth as a holiday table staple, but it wouldn’t be out of place come summer. Simple dishes and a bright centerpiece (they used a bowl of oranges) and this table is ready to party.
from Sweet Paul Magazine
Hand sewn lunch bags are already just about as cool as it gets, only one-upped when first dyed in shibori style. Make a few, as we think all of your coworkers will want one as well.
from Alice & Lois
What will you do with all of the scraps from your larger shibori projects? Enter these bookmarks, which can be made in a flash with minimal materials. The suede tie is a great finishing touch on these book bound beauties.
from A Beautiful Mess
This Crate and Barrel hack is sure to add a bit of print and a lot of conversation to any dinner table. The tutorial for this also includes a napkin dyed pink; not technically “shibori”, but definitely stylish.
Another faux-shibori look is probably the project I’m most likely to try first. Mostly because it’s one of those DIYs that requires zero hard work, which are hard to come by. A little ice, a sprinkle of dye, and a bit of patience results in a dramatic throw blanket.
from Francois et Moi
A few flour sacks and a dye kit are all you need to create these fun tea towels, which bring a pop of pattern to any kitchen.
from Frugal Living Adventures
Sticks and stones… can create a backyard focal point? This sail gives plenty of shade, a cool bohemian look, and a reason to host an outdoor party ASAP. Pair with string lights for the ultimate ambiance.
by Whitney Donae
Adding art to a room can make a space go from looking dumpy to designer. These wall art pieces can be made quickly and like all shibori has infinite possibilities for pattern play. Even small framed pieces are sure to make a big statement.
from Lovely Indeed
Throw down these placemats on an outdoor table for instant summer style. They may even make spills and drips a little less noticeable, too. I’m going to need the dipped wooden flatware in this blog, as well.
by Alice & Lois
Weaving for wall art seems like fun, until about row five. Give your walls a touch of textile faster and easier with this simple wall hanging tutorial. This is another great project for those who can’t do permanent damage to walls — lightweight fabric means that one small nail gives life to a large piece of art.
by Yellow Owl Workshop
Save yourself a confusing trip to the craft store and grab this all-in-one kit from Yellow Owl Workshop, our go-to for all kind of craft kits. This one comes with a dripless applicator, so the technique is a little different from traditional tie-dying, but a lot less messy, too.
Did you give any of these DIYs a try? I’d love to see pictures! Send us your shibori successes on social media, or reach out to us in the comments below.