Wednesday, August 11, 2010

How I Hacked a Paul Frank T-Shirt

For Eli's first birthday I made a jumper with an appliqued number 1 on the front. It was my first attempt at sewing clothes from a pattern.

For birthday #2 I wanted to simplify by appliqueing large 2 on a nice cotton T. I had a difficult time finding a simple shirt without buttons or pockets.

Luckily, I found a cool Paul Frank shirt at Target on sale for under $4 and the design of the shirt worked perfectly for adding my applique! Here's how I did it:

Step #1:

I drew a '2' on a piece of scrap card stock to make a stencil. You can also print the number (or letters) in a font and size you like. Cut the number (or letter) out.

Step #2:

Trace the number backwards on the back (smooth side) of double-sided Wonder-Under.

Step #3:

Iron the Wonder-Under with your backwards number to the wrong side of your chosen fabric.

Step #4:

Use fabric scissors to cut out the number. Check out those crisp edges.

Step #5:
Remove the paper backing on the Wonder-Under and iron in place. I was careful not to let the iron touch the print of the shirt.
At this time I also ironed a piece of freezer paper to the inside of the shirt beneath the '2'. It acts as an easy stabilizer when sewing the edge. The "slick" side of the freezer paper should touch the fabric. It peels off easily at the end of your project.

Step #6:

Use a small zig-zag stitch to edge the applique. This will prevent fraying and make the piece look finished and professional.

Step #7:

Remove the stabilizer (freezer paper). It peels away easily thanks to the perforations of the needle when sewing the zig-zag edge.

Step #8:

Knot the loose threads & voila! What would normally take 30 minutes took ALL DAY LONG thanks to my two helpers.

To my right, drawing at my ankles, it's Eli!

At my left, smiling among the remains of our warehouse store robot (see Haiku #27), it's Lucas!

Coming soon: A photo of the birthday boy donning his birthday shirt! 8.28!

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