These DIY tie dye pillows made from a tote are perfect for your patio, front porch, couch or bed! They add an element of fun without taking a lot of time or money to create.
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These DIY tie dye pillows from a tote were so easy to put together! Using canvas for this project was a no brainer for me. I wanted a sturdy material that could withstand being outside and canvas does a great job of that. Using a premade canvas tote saved me time because it required no measuring or cutting, plus it only has one side that needs to be sewed. As for the pattern: what says summer more than tie dye?
Are you ready? Let’s get started:
Materials Needed for Tie Dye Pillow
- large canvas tote(s) in white (I found a 3 pack from JoAnns)
- tie dye kit, in desired colors (I love buying the party packs for the variety of colors, plus it is cheaper in the long run.)
- rubber bands (usually included in tie dye kit)
- disposable plastic gloves (usually included in tie dye kit)
- wire rack
- plastic wrap
- sewing machine
- coordinating thread
- needle (for hand stitching)
- straight pins or wonder clips
- Polyfil Premium Polyester Fiber Fill
How to Make a DIY Tie Dye Pillow from a Tote
First, you will need to prep your tote(s) to be tie dyed. Use the elastics to create your desired tie dye pattern. (I chose to do a spiral and a bullseye pattern for mine.)
Mix the dye with water right before you are ready to start dying your totes for maximum potency. I was able to dye two large totes with the three bottle of dye I had.
*PRO TIP* I prefer to do all my tie dye projects outside. The best method I’ve found to prevent the mixing of dyes during the process is to get an old cookie sheet and then place a wire cooling rack inside. Then you can put your tote (or whatever you are dying) on top of the wire rack and any excess dye will drip onto the cookie sheet.
Once the totes are dyed, wrap them in plastic wrap and let them sit for 6-8 hours. (I always go for closer to 8 hours with my tie dye projects.) Then, unwrap them and rinse them in cold water until the water runs clear. I usually do a pre-rinse with the elastics still on, then cut the elastics off and rinse it again. Wash and dry the totes according to the tie dye kit instructions.
Make the Totes Into Pillows
The first step is to cut the straps off the tote. Then, turn the tote inside out and line up the top sides of the tote. Use your straight pins or wonder clips to secure the pieces together. Because we will be turning the totes right side out after sewing them, be sure not to sew all the way across the top. I always like to put two pins next to each other as a reminder to stop. I would recommend leaving a 4 inch gap or so, as the canvas material is thicker and a little more stiff when being turned through the hole.
Take the tote to your sewing machine. Line your sewing foot up next to the part of the tote that is folded over (see photo below) and sew a straight line down the tote, remembering to backstitch at the beginning and end.
Turn the tote right side out through the hole and push the corners out.
Next comes stuffing the pillow. Whenever I make a custom pillow, I like to use Poly-fil Premium Polyester Fiber Fill. It always holds up really well and isn’t lumpy. One key to this is making sure to separate the fiber fill before stuffing it into the pillow. This makes the fiber fill more fluffy. Basically, you just grab a large handful of the fiber fill, hold it in one hand, and then use the other hand to pull smaller pieces of the stuffing, separating it from the larger handful. This video from Poly-fil does a great job of showing and explaining the process.
Once you’ve added enough stuffing to your pillow and you like the firmness, it’s time to close up the hole. There are a couple of ways you could do this. The first would be to use your machine to stitch it up. If you use this method, you will end up with a small seam on the outside of your pillow. The second method, which is the one I used, is to use a needle and thread and stitch it up using an invisible stitch or ladder stitch. (You can watch this video on how to do an invisible/ladder stitch.)
And now you’re done! Display your new tie dye pillows on your patio, front porch, couch, bed or anywhere you want some tie dye fun!
Also, be sure to check out this post from Laura Kelly Designs with 16 inspiring DIY patio ideas!
And before you leave, don’t forget to enter this amazing giveaway from Fairfield World for a chance to win some of their quality products! The contest winner will be drawn on 8/10/2020.
Where are you going to display your new tie dye pillows?