Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Summer Camp Crafts with our Bruers: Matt's Tie Dyed Tank Tops

Last summer, we ordered some tank tops to be sold in The Bruery Tasting Room. Warm weather, beaches, beer festivals, outdoor concerts, BBQs ... sounds like tank top season to me! But, we ended up with quite a few of these tank tops left over.

As I was looking at the pile of white tank tops with their bright multi-colored The Bruery logos, I thought back to a bluegrass festival I attended with my dad a few weeks back. I was a little surprised to see a few other attendees sporting their tie-dyed brewery shirts that day. That’s all the convincing it took. We were about to have some hippie-inspired, hand-crafted, tie dyed The Bruery tank tops.

We used a tie dye kit to make this dream come true. You can pick one up at just about any craft store, or you can do it all yourself with some simple tie dye ingredients.

Step #1 Soak
While wearing gloves, mix the soda ash in with warm water. This caustic solution prepares the shirt for dying and will result in more vibrant colors. Let the shirts soak in the solution for 10-20 minutes.

Step #2 Tie
After you wring the soda ash solution out of the shirts, it’s time to tie the shirt so it can be dyed. This site has some classic ties that can be done. For our shirts, I stuck with the spiral, pleats, and electric bunching. You can do a google search for “advanced tie dye” to see some truly inspired concepts.

Step #3 Dye - Flip - Dye
This is where the fun really begins! The tie dye kits that you can buy at local craft stores will typically come with the direct apply tubes, where you just add warm water to the squeeze-tube, give it a shake, then squirt the dye onto your clothes. It often takes more dye than one might think to get all the way through the shirt. Flip the shirts over and generously apply dye to both sides.

Step #4 Bag
Now you wrap your wet tie dyed shirt (still bound by rubber bands) in a plastic bag, tie it closed and let it sit for 12-24 hours. Patiently waiting is the hardest part.

Step #5 Rinse
If you’re anything like me, you’ll probably wake up the next morning like a little kid on christmas morning eager to unwrap your groovy new threads. Take the shirt out of the bag, take off the rubber bands and rinse the shirt under cool water until the water dripping from the shirt runs clear. If you’re doing a lot of shirts, make sure you have some hoppy refreshment nearby - all that rinsing and wringing can be very tiresome. Once you’ve removed the excess dye, run the clothes through a soapless wash cycle and dry them.

There is a very limited quantity of tank tops available for sale currently in The Bruery Tasting Room. Tank tops are available in men’s sizes L, XL and XXL (which also means we have some sweet, tie dyed women's beach cover ups!)

It was before noon, so a coffee beer seemed fitting to enjoy while working on this. It was time for some Rice and Beans, (our Or Xata ale with Tierra Mia coffee added) for the win.

Post written by Matt Olesh, our Director of Retail Operations. When he's not in the Tasting Room or at beer events, you'll probably find him drinking beer at the local watering hole in Seal Beach, golfing, playing with his cats, attempting to play the mandolin, or homebrewing.

Make some more summertime crafts with our Bruers. Check out our Pinterest board and these related blogposts:

No comments: