Friday, April 27, 2012

Bleached T-shirts....what NOT to do!

So I'm all about sharing my mistakes so you don't have to make them too.
I appreciate when others do the same for me.
In that spirit I'm sharing with you what NOT to do when making a T-shirt with a bleached out design.
We thought it would be fun to let our church Young Women's group decorate some t-shirts and we thought this would be an inexpensive, fun and cute way for them to do it.

I thought I should try it out before letting the girls loose with bleach.....and it turns out it was a good thing I did.

With this being a church activity I was very budget conscious. If you've seen the bleached t-shirts around the Internet most people have used their vinyl cutting machines to cut the designs. I do not have one and I didn't want to buy any. So, my brilliant idea was to print up some designs on cardstock and cut them out with an exacto knife.  I used Picmonkey for my designs.

Then I used spray adhesive on the cut-out designs and applied them to the t-shirt.
This is where I made my first mistake......can you see it by looking at the picture below?

Yep! I put the spray adhesive on the black printed side of the paper and then stuck it to the shirt.
If you look closely at the picture under this you can see the black that is now permanently a part of the shirt.

After you adhere your design to the shirt you spray with bleach. The bleach will change the color of the shirt around your design and then when you peel off the paper your shirt looks awesome!

Mistake two: I added water to the bleach in the spray bottle. This made the bleach spread and not speckle. I was going for the speckled look.

Mistake three and the most important one of all: When you spray the bleach you need to squirt it a couple of times and then wait and see what it does before you spray more.
I sprayed and thought, "It's not doing anything it needs more." So I sprayed more.....a lot more.....and then all of a sudden the whole thing was pink and not speckled purple with pink like I wanted.....

Mistake four: I didn't put anything between the front and back of the shirt to keep the bleach from soaking through to the back.
This is what it ended up looking like.

Not exactly what I was going for, but I think it's kind of cute in a sort of tie-dyed way.
The good news is she loves it and that's all that really matters.

And even better news! My second attempt turned out more like what I was hoping for.

Up next.....Bleached T-shirts....what TO DO!


Yxl Ian said...

wow,good job, I like the t shirt.

rpp said...

Thanks sooooo much for the great tips and tutorial. I tried them after reading many tutorials and shared your post on my blog as well. :)