DIY shibori shopping bag

shibori dye tutorial

shibori has been all over my pinterest feed this year so it was only a matter of time until i had try it out myself. if you follow me on snapchat (burkatronblog) you will have seen my first attempts last weekend!

my previous dying experiments were as a teen making multi coloured psychedelic t-shirts (so rad) but shibori is a much more grown up affair. it's a japanese dyeing technique where the material is usually folded to create gorgeous patterns on fabric.

the best part? it's not only crazy fun but easy- the perfect weekend project! i'll share how i made this easy tote with you below.


elastic bands

1. fold your tote lengthways, accordion style to make a long strip. 

2. fold accordion style in the other direction to make a neat square with the handles free.

3. take 2 squares of wood (or tiles) and place them on the back and front of the folded fabric. secure with elastic bands (or string!) 

4. mix up your indigo/navy dye according to the manufactures instructions. i used a dylon dye which i mixed in warm water and salt in a big stainless steel pot. place the fabric bundle into the dye and turn every so often to make sure the dye is evenly distributed.

5. dyes will vary but i left mine in for about 10 minutes -way less than the time recommended on the packet! if you want a lighter result you can choose to dip the edges of the fabric in rather than completely submerging the whole bag. 

6. remove the fabric and rinse thoroughly, my dye recommended using cold water- double check yours!

how to shibori dye
shibori dye techniques crafts
how to shibori

i'm crazy about this pattern, there are oodles of variations to try if you fancy something a little different. i also dyed a few other items- i had so much dye leftover it seemed a shame to throw it out! i might share them on here another day..

100% going to use this tote for all my shopping trips, especially food shops- i hate buying those ugly plastic bags!

hope you try it, back soon

caroline x


  1. Wow!!! Love this idea!!x

    Millie x

  2. This is such an effective DIY! Agreed, WAY better than ugly plastic bags :) xx

    1. oh boy i have way too many plastic bags at home aha :)

  3. Great idea, I will have to try this...... much nicer than a plain shopping bag



Caroline Burke | Burkatron. Theme by STS.