How to Tie a Sarong Wrap in 18 ‘Stylish’ Ways and 21 Other Practical Uses While on Vacation

By Mike Leighton | Travel Tips and Hacks
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Woman on the beach holding a colorful animal print beach sarong wrap

Photo: BikiniLuxe

This has to be one of the most versatile and fashionable items of clothing that you can take on any vacation with you, bringing a beach sarong wrap (or two) when traveling to some sunny destination should always be somewhere on your packing list.

They are inexpensive to buy, they make the perfect swimsuit cover up while on the beach, they are multi-functional and have many practical uses, and since they hardly take up any room at all you should take at least two with you.

But before I jump to the list of ‘practical’ uses, here’s a video showing you 18 stylish ways how to tie a swimsuit sarong with easy to follow instructions.

How to tie a sarong wrap in 18 ‘stylish’ ways

If you like the turquoise and rusty colored sarong Christine is wearing, it’s one of her own designs that she made herself – see the DIY video further below.

21 practical uses for a sarong wrap while on vacation

The sarong isn’t just a fashion item for women it has so many other practical uses other than a beach cover-up, a sarong skirt or a floral dress, here are twenty one to begin with…

(1) They make excellent beach towels – they are light and easy to carry, they pack small therefore leaving plenty of room for your other essentials, and they clean up easy after use.

(2) They can protect you from sunburn – you’re out for the day and you’ve run out of sunscreen. No worries… just slip a sarong over your shoulders and it will protect you from the hot summer sun, or use it as a makeshift sun shade and hang it off a tree branch so you can stay in the shade.

(3) Use as a head scarf – some countries require women to cover their heads in public, a makeshift head scarf will help you blend in and not attract unwanted attention to yourself.

Top 12 sexiest ways to tie a sarong | Cosmopolitan

(4) Replace your big towel – why pack a big heavy towel when you can use a sarong instead? They work just as well and they dry much faster, you can even wear your sarong as a bath robe.

(5) Use as a bed sheet – not happy with your hotel/hostel hygiene, then use a sarong as a bed sheet, use a second sarong to cover-up and protect you from mosquitoes.

(6) Replace your sweater – when the temperature drops in the evening and you are feeling a little chilly, wear your sarong around your shoulders like a shawl, it also comes in handy when you’re on an airplane, use it like a blanket to keep you warm.

(7) Mosquito protection – if you haven’t any mosquito repellent then wrap a sarong around your neck and shoulders and any other exposed skin, keeping them pesky mosquitoes out whilst keeping you cool during the day.

(8) Emergency shopping bag and beach bag – if you need a lightweight shoulder bag to carry your groceries, or a makeshift beach bag to take all your bits and bobs down to the beach, then all you need to do is tie a few knots and transform your sarong into a spacious cross body bag… to see how it’s done watch the video just beneath.

(9-21) And here are 13 more practical uses – use as a laundry bag, a tablecloth, a cooking apron, a picnic blanket. Roll it up and use it as a pillow when traveling by plane, train or bus, or even as a lower-back support on those long journeys.

Use as a privacy curtain when getting changed in public areas, make it into a baby carrier, or even a baby hammock. Use as a temporary bandage or tourniquet in medical emergencies, an arm sling, an emergency rope. You can even use a sarong as protective padding to wrap around your camera, laptop or any other valuables.

How to make a sarong into a shopping bag or beach bag

From a sarong wrap to a cross body bag in 90 seconds

  • (a) Fold a square shaped sarong into a triangle keeping the wrong side on the outside
  • (b) Along the longest length of the triangle tie a knot at both ends (about 12 – 15 inches in from each end)
  • (c) Now turn the whole thing inside-out so that the wrong side is now on the inside and place the knots into the center of the wrap
  • (d) Finally take the 2 remaining ends and tie a knot at the top, and voila you now have a spacious cross-body bag

How to make your own ‘Dip Dye’ DIY swimsuit sarong

Do-it-yourself ‘Dip Dye’ bathing suit sarong

You can find dozens of different styles of printed sarongs including sarongs from Bali, Hawaiian and Batik sarongs right here.

But if you’re after something a little more unique, a swimsuit sarong to go with your favorite bathing suit then why not design your own. In the above video Christine demonstrates how to make a 3 colored beach cover up with this dip-dye technique…

  1. You’ll need two yards (183 cm) in length of white ‘gauze like’ cotton fabric or a similar material.
  2. Using a seam ripper make a one inch fringe along the raw edge on both sides of the sarong.
  3. Fold the sarong (in half) 3 times in the same direction into a long rectangle with the fringes along the longest length.
  4. Fill 3 rectangular plastic containers with hot water and add 4 tablespoons of salt into each container and then mix in the Dylon fabric dye as follows…
  5. Dye bath-1 (beige color) – mix in a small amount of dark-brown dye, you’re aiming for a beige color when the fabric is dry and not dark brown, so only use a tiny amount.
  6. Dye bath-2 (rust color) – contains a mixture of 3 dyes, dark-brown, tulip-red and some sunflower-yellow.
  7. Dye bath-3 (turquoise color) – contains a mixture of 3 dyes, bahama-blue, tropical-green and a little ocean-blue.
  8. Start by soaking the sarong in hot water, this will help the dye adhere better to the fabric.
  9. Except for the top 10 inches, dip the entire sarong into dye bath-1 (beige color) for 10 minutes and use a wooden spatula to submerge the fabric in the dye.
  10. Now dip it into dye bath-2 (rust color) no more than 1/3 of the way up the sarong, and for 10 minutes slowly raise and lower the fabric in the dye to create a smooth gradient effect.
  11. Now dip the top 10 inches it into dye bath-3 (turquoise color) and again for 10 minutes slowly raise and lower the fabric in the dye.
  12. Let the sarong dry out overnight and in the morning rinse it out in cold water to remove any excess dye.
  13. Finally, hand wash the sarong in hand-hot water with added detergent, then rinse out once again in cold water and lay it out to dry.

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