22 Apr


One of the most exciting days for HIGHonDIY was when BuzzFeed contacted me for a collaboration on a home decor DIY. BuzzFeed is one of my favorite sites so I could not be happier! Of the several ideas I proposed, they really liked the tie-dye idea for a pillow case using a natural dye. The natural dye I chose was turmeric — a key ingredient in Indian cuisine, one of my favorites! My DIY was posted on BuzzFeed earlier in April and I am sharing the same DIY with you here.


You’ll need:

  • Rubber Bands Packet
  • Pom Pom Trim (long enough to cover two sides of the pillow case)
  • Turmeric Powder
  • Needle & Thread (in the same color as the trim or neutral color if possible)
  • White/Light Colored Pillow Case (natural fabrics work the best. I used a 100% cotton white pillow case)
  • Large Pot
  • Water

Step 1: Fill 3/4ths of a large pot with water and add 5 tablespoons of turmeric powder, a natural fabric dye. Put it to boil on medium heat. Keep checking on it while you do Step 2 & 3.

Step 2: Lay your pillow case flat with the top part facing up. Starting from one side, pinch a small piece of fabric from the top layer of the pillow case and tie a rubber band around it. Repeat it all over the top layer of the pillow case.

Step 3: Once all tying is done, rinse the pillow case in cold water. This will help the fabric pick up the natural dye better. Wring the excess water out of the pillow case.

Step 4: The water with turmeric from Step 1 should be boiling by now, so turn the heat to low and put the wet pillow case in it. Use a large spoon to evenly sink the pillow case in the turmeric dye. Let the pillow case boil in the dye for an hour to get a rich color. Stir it every 15 minutes or so to make sure the fabric is picking up the dye evenly.

Step 5: After an hour of boiling, take the large pot off the heat. Let it cool down for 10-15 minutes. Then take out the pillow case and rinse it in cold water until you get rid of all the excess dye and wring it out.

Step 6: Remove all the rubber bands you had tied to the top layer of the pillow case. Spread out the pillow case to see the beautiful design and let it dry. If it is too wrinkled after its dry, iron it out.

Step 7: Once the pillow case is dry, pick the two sides you want to add pom pom trims to. Cut the trim to the length of the pillow case side and sew them together with the needle and thread. Add the pom pom trim to the opposite side of the pillow case as well.

Then you have a beautiful pillow case dyed naturally and embellished with a pom pom trim in a contrasting color.


I hope you enjoyed this DIY. I had a lot of fun experimenting outside the regular fashion DIYs you see here and I am definitely going to give other natural dyes a try. Until next time, get your creative fix and stay HIGH on DIY!

19 Comments on “high on NATURAL TIE-DYE PILLOW diy”

  1. Amanda October 19, 2016 at 5:04 PM #

    I was really excited about using tumeric to tie dye naturally however when I submerged my fabric into the hot water all of my rubber bands snapped, leaving me with no designs just a solid piece of dyed fabric. Luckily I had multiple pieces ready to be dyed so I waited for it to cool for an hour or so before putting the rest in. Not sure if it was the rubber bands I used but beware!!

  2. Claire March 17, 2014 at 3:47 PM #

    I have the same question and above, will it just wash out? I would love to try with bed sheets but I don’t want them to smell like turmeric, and I obviously need to be able to wast them. Thanks!

    • HIGHonDIY March 22, 2014 at 7:26 PM #

      You can iron it after the dye is dry to seal it better but over time, it will fade with washing. let me know if you try!

    • Simone June 12, 2014 at 11:26 PM #

      I think you could use soda ash to fix it, but you would have to check.

  3. Charlotte April 23, 2013 at 2:22 AM #

    I love the colour that turmeric dyes fabric! I only figured it out by chance, I found about saffron being a natural dye, but it was so expensive I bought turmeric instead!

  4. manda April 22, 2013 at 5:23 PM #

    Is the end result washable?

  5. Meghan April 22, 2013 at 5:22 PM #

    oh my word I have to try this ! thanks for sharing.

    Meghan Silva’s Blog

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