Stuck in the house with snow and ice on the ground? Does the threat of another two feet of the white stuff hang over your head? As much as I love winter and snow, I get a little stir crazy after a few days away from work. When the threat of a snow day is in the future, I think ahead and plan to have a few fun, easy, and inexpensive projects to do to keep myself occupied when stranded in the house. Whether it’s baking or crafting, I look forward to these projects.
A little time and just a little money will net some great results with this bleach “stained” t-shirt. Within about 30 minutes, you can have a cute shirt to wear out and about or a gift for someone special.
Once you’ve decided what you want on the front of your shirt, you need to make a stencil. I found a design online and printed it on
regular printer paper and traced it onto the dull side of the freezer paper. Once you’ve traced it onto the freezer paper, carefully cut it out. With the shiny side down, iron your design onto the front of your t-shirt. While you’ve got the iron out, press out any wrinkles or crease lines on the shirt.
CAUTION: Before bleaching, put a heavy piece of cardboard inside the shirt, between the layers so bleach doesn’t soak through the fabric.
Pour about a quarter cup of bleach into a spray bottle with a fine or super fine spray mist. You might want to practice spraying on an old shirt or piece of cardboard to test the strength of the spray. Caution! You won’t need much bleach to do the job!
Start by gently spraying a very light coat of bleach onto your shirt all around the stencil. The bleach works quickly, but it can take a couple of minutes for the bleach to pull all the color out. Don’t get impatient and spray more bleach, just give it more time to start working. If it’s not bleached enough after a few minutes, do another gentle spray and wait again.
Let the shirt dry before carefully removing the stencil. Toss your shirt into the dryer for a few minutes to remove any crystallized bleach.
I had a couple of mishaps while making this project. My first attempt I tried card stock with spray adhesive as my stencil—didn’t work at all! Freezer paper is definitely the way to go. It’s cheap and easy to use; more importantly it will not let bleach bleed through, ruining your design. You can find freezer paper at the grocery store next to the aluminum foil and plastic wrap.
I do apologize for the quality of the pictures this time. I had a terrible time with the pictures and since I’ve already given both shirts away, I can’t take new ones. Although, I’m planning on making myself both a Valentine’s Day and Saint Patrick’s Day shirt, I may try to update the photos and get some better quality ones on this post.
I hope you try this project, it’s fun and easy, and is a good way to showcase your interests.