6 Modern Ways to Wear the Intimidating Tie-Dye Trend
by Sidney Burds
One of the biggest trends for Spring 2019 is tie-dye, and though it appears tricky, we’ll teach you how this unexpected trend can work with your wardrobe.
What was once a must-have for any 1960s themed party, surfer girls, and Grateful Dead fans, tie-dye seemed like a far cry from It Girl status. But all of a sudden, in the Spring/Summer 2019 runways, designers Prada, Proenza Schouler, and Stella McCartney had models strutting down the runways in the psychedelic pattern, and Gigi Hadid rocked the look in her own street style. Rather than tie-dye as we’ve known it on basic tees accessorized with daisy crowns and peace signs, the new tie-dye has been given a modern refresh on non-traditional fabrics and diverse silhouettes.
So how does one without a designer budget get in on this trend without looking like they just left Coachella or a costume party? We’ll tell you how!
Like anything in life, when learning something new I find visuals to always be helpful. We did some insta-stalking found five influencers who gave us some major style inspiration to help you visualize this powerful pattern with your own clothes. Let’s dig in deeper to see how they made the tie-dye trend work in a modern wardrobe.
1. Offset Tie-Dye with Earthtones
Here we have influencer Usominne wearing your “traditional” tie-dye shirt. A risky style, because it has both the circular binding pattern and rainbow colors. The key takeaway here is to wrangle in the rainbow with muted tones. A tailored pant and chunky knit top, both in earthtones, help keep the tie-dye grounded while adding some whimsy to a chilly spring outfit.
Wear this literal rainbow tie-dye tee with a knit skirt and cardigan, trust us.
Shop It! Alice + Olivia Jeans Shira Roll Sleeve Tee, $195
Wear this jacket over any earthtone for a fun pop of pattern.
Shop It! BLANKNYC Tie Dye Hem Crop Denim Jacket, $138
2. Look for Dark or Neutral Tie-Dye Tones
Your closet looks like a dark abyss with 50 shades of black so you think tie-dye is an impossibility, wrong. Good news for you, influencer Eva Chen shows us that tie-dye comes in black, too. This otherwise all-black look gets some visual interest thanks to the dark dye, and Dr. Martens complete this look of refined grunge. I encourage you to look for tie-dye pieces that feature the dark palette you love so dearly. Moral of the story: Work with your closet, not against it.
Layer a neutral sweater overtop for chilly days indoors at the office.
Shop It! Enza Costa Silky Rib Tank Dress, $198
I love how this tee is styled and I’m copying ASAP.
Shop It! Raquel Allegra Long Sleeve Tee, $223
3. Tie It with Another Bold Trend
Tie-dye isn’t for the faint of heart, but maybe you’re already a fan of bold prints like this past years biggest trend animal print. You don’t have to ditch your beloved leopard prints to take on tie-dye, where them together. I would think it was a crazy mix, too, if I hadn’t seen this print pairing on Charlotte Bickley. Mixing tie-dye with animal print turns out to be effortlessly cool, and I’m planning on trying a tie-dye t-shirt and silk leopard skirt combo come summer.
Charlotte showed us how to wear the duo in winter, here’s summer!
Shop It! Double Trouble Gang Here Comes The Sun T-Shirt, $100
This kimono would look gorgeous as a beach cover up with a leopard print bikini or mules.
Shop It! Chiffon Tie-Dye Kimono, $14
4. Stick with One Color Palette
So you’re ready to deep dive, head-first into tie-dye. Always the early adopter, and never afraid to try something once, I give you tie-dye layered with more tie-dye. How do you keep it from being too loud? Focus on the color scheme. Look for dyed pieces with ombre or monochromatic palettes. Above Caroline Huang Maguire has a heavily saturated tie-dye top with less densely patterned bottom. The color palette is kept to reds, pinks, and purples as to not overpower. Look for simplified color schemes with mixed resist dye patterns to make intriguing combinations when attempting this at home.
Try this top…
Shop It! Love Tank Tie Dye, $58
…with these joggers. Mismatch made in heaven.
Shop It! ATM Anthony Thomas Melillo Tie Dye Joggers, $295
5. Find a Softer Tie-Dye
Girly-girls and preppy ladies, if there’s anyone to convert you to tie-dye it’s Arielle Charnas of Something Navy. Get away from the bolder, pattern heavy tie-dye pieces and go for sparsely dyed abstract garments. A lightly dyed piece adds more interest than a plain white one, gives you the trend, and can be worn in your wardrobe as normal as the plain piece would. Go for pastel dyed tops or a reinvigorated spring tie-dye trench coat.
This light pink tie-dye shirt looks amazing with an all white outfit.
Shop It! Oversized Shirt, $50
Two trends, one jumpsuit.
Shop It! UO Tie-Dye Button-Down Coverall, $119
6. Use Tie-Dye as an Accent
If you’re afraid of the tie-dye wearing you verses the other way around, having it dyed on an accessory is a great option. Take influencer Caroline Daur for example, yes she’s wearing a tie-dye shirt but notice her ombre dyed Chanel bag. It’s subtle; stands out but doesn’t overwhelm the rest of her outfit. Look for tie-dye accessories like bags, shoes, or clothing that has an accent of tie-dye on a pant cuff or neckline.
These sherbert pink joggers give a summery update to your athleisure attire.
Shop It! Champion Streak Dye Stripe Joggers, $65
Tie-dye gives this ladylike hair accessory some edge.
Shop It! Namjosh Tie Dye Scrunchie, $28
The best part of this trend? You can make a look that’s completely your own thanks to a little DIY. Rather than make shirts that resemble summer camps of the past, aim for more sophisticated patterns as seen in shibori and and batik techniques. Grab some dye, rubber bands, and get binding!
Highly recommend trying your own hand at tie-dye for one-of-a-kind clothes.
Shop It! Rit DyeMore Advanced Liquid Dye, $5