This shirt was one of those ideas that I had imagined very differently in my head from how it turned out. I had this super lightweight material and I knew my son would want a shirt out of it because green is the only color he sees. I thought it should be a construction shirt since he had been asking for one. So I asked him what kind of machine he wanted on the shirt, and then began the loooong process. I like things quick and easy so this was quite the undertaking to finish. We spent 2 days trying to find the right construction machine to put on it. Apparently I have a very particular boy on my hands. He was quite insistent that he have a crane with both a hook and a grabber… Impossible right? After 2 days I finally convinced him that there was no such thing and showed him that all my attempts to combine the 2 looked ridiculous. He settled on this “slicer” which is probably a log cutter or something and was very excited.
So I cut out the stencil on my cricut from freezer paper and painted it….
This is what happened. It doesn’t look terrible, but it doesn’t look great either. The black I used, took to the fabric like ink and was blacker than any black I’ve ever seen. Beside the black, the slicer looked dull and from a distance you couldn’t even tell what it was. I was sad. It took me forever to paint the stencil in different colors and do a few layers of paint. I absolutely hate to re-do anything but the idea of it just wouldn’t go away. I decided to throw it away and start again. Thank heavens it was cheap material and I had 2 yards of it 🙂 I always over-buy yardage. This time, I made the stencil a bit different in the track part and I made it a little bigger.
See how I painstakingly ironed in those teeny tiny pieces in the track? It’s definitely not like me to spend so much time making something look just a little bit better. It really made all the difference though. If you’ve never done freezer paper stenciling before, I’m going to do a full tutorial on it the next time I do one. I’ve had a couple requests. Two things to remember are 1) waxy side down so that it irons to the fabric and 2) be sure to cut your words out accordingly so they aren’t backwards.
This was actually the first of three stencils. I painted the machine on, adding white to the black so it wouldn’t look so inky, but I thought that it needed something more. I knew I wanted to do sparks from the beginning, but I wanted some wow. I decided metal would be cool and implemented that idea as shown… I’m not in love but it IS pretty cool. I didn’t think it was going to work at first. I used a sparkle silver and boy was it sparkly! I had to bring in my husband for his opinion on whether or not it looked too girly. He assured me that metal could have a little sparkle. It ended up washing mostly away anyway.
As always, there is a lot I would do differently if I were to ever re-create this piece. Maybe it would help if I drew out the whole design first instead of going step by step without thought for the future 🙂 My drawing skills aren’t quite up to par for that task though… I think I’ll stick to the haphazard processes of Ariel. They serve me pretty well.
It’s all about the kids though right? When I finished this shirt, he wore it for three days straight. I think he likes it just a little bit. The sparks are his favorite part. They are mine as well.
Mr. fake smile.
Don’t all the cut down branches look great for a background? And the pots and stumps off my porch? I really am a pro at photography 😉
See you next time for another toddler girl tee. This one is super easy. I’ll probably be working on the bubble romper for a week or 2 so don’t get too excited about that yet. But DO get excited. It will be awesome… just not yet 🙂