Monday, July 7, 2014

Bleach Design T-shirts: Harry Potter Edition

As a Harry Potter fan, I love wearing Harry Potter paraphernalia.  If you're planning a trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the near future, you'll want to have a Harry Potter shirt on to show your pride.  Rumor has it that people wearing their own homemade fan apparel have been known to get special treatment at the park, so there's also that to consider.  There are a lot of cool ways to make your own personalized T-shirts.  One method that is easy and awesome is the bleach design method.  With a few simple materials you'll be all set to show off your own T-shirt!

 Now, I'm making mine Harry Potter themed because I am so excited about the opening of the new park.  However, if you are not obsessed enough with Harry Potter to make your own T-shirt, the same instructions apply regardless of your design choices.

Materials:  Washed shirt, Con-Tact Paper, permanent marker, spray bottle with 50/50 bleach and water mixture, cardboard, scissor or razor blade

1.  Make your design.  Think of the design you are doing like a pumpkin carving.  If it's too difficult for a pumpkin, you might not want to do it for this project.  Your design needs to have thick enough lines that you will be able to trace and cut them out.  Lettering works very well.  I created my design in Word, but you could hand draw it.  You can download my pdf if you just want to use mine (Always.pdf).  If you created your design electronically, print it out.

2.  Trace your design on to Con-Tact paper.  I taped my print out and a piece of Con-Tact paper to the window.  Using a sharpie, I traced my design on to the Con-Tact paper.  Remember, make sure you're tracing your design onto the clear/shiny side of the Con-Tact paper, not the grid side.

3.  Cut out your design.  Carefully, cut the design you traced in sharpie out of the contact paper.  You can use scissors or a razor blade to accomplish this, whatever you are more comfortable with.  When you are finished you should have your entire design cut out.

4.  Put a piece of cardboard in between the front and the back of the shirt.  This will prevent the bleach from getting through the shirt

5.  Attach your Con-Tact paper to your shirt.  Peel the paper off the back of the Con-Tact paper, and stick your design in the desired location on your shirt.  Put tape or Con-Tact paper anywhere you do not want bleach.  For example, I put tape on the seams of the neck and sleeves.

6.  Spray the bleach on the shirt.  Using a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of water and bleach, spray over your design.  Make sure you get the entire area surrounding your design.  A light misting is enough.  The bleach will take a few minutes to work.  I recommend doing a first coat, waiting around 30 minutes, and then seeing if you need to do a second coat.  Do not saturate the shirt.

Right after spraying the bleach
2 minutes after spraying 

5 minutes after spraying
30 minutes after spraying

7.  Let the shirt dry completely.  Do not stick it in the dryer.

8.  Remove the Con-Tact paper from your shirt.  Some bleeding may have occurred, but it should have been minimal if you didn't use too much bleach.

9.  Wash the shirt again.  This get rid of the bleach smell. I washed mine alone because I didn't want to accidentally bleach other clothes.

10.  Rock your new shirt.

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