T-shirt Projects

T-shirt Scrap Necklaces: 7 Ways

Whether you’re celebrating back to school or back to work (three weeks back from maternity leave for me!), here are a handful of quick-and-easy, no-sew techniques to accessorize on the cheap. Just grab all those scraps you’ve cut from your white T-shirts, rejuvenate them with a splash of tie-dye, and macramé your way to a statement necklace or two (or seven!). Wear them together or solo or mix and match for a different look each day of the week.

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I’ve always loved shopping at hardware stores for my materials — washers and hex nuts and some of the more delicate chains lend a nice physical weight to a fabric-based piece while adding an industrial edge to the overall aesthetic.

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Materials:
-White T-shirt strips
-Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye (blue)
-Lock washers and flat washers in various sizes (#10, 1/4, and 3/8)
-Scissors

necklace materials generation-t.com

Make it:
Click over to iLoveToCreate blog for the illustrated diagram and step-by-step instructions for each necklace strand.

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[ No Comments | Posted on August 26th, 2014 ]

DIY: Crossback Tank Top

Summer is all about easy, breezy fashion (stay cool) and tie-dye (stay fun!). Here’s an ombre-style surface treatment for a quick-and-easy T-shirt transformation. From plain white T-shirt to a smock-styled, crossback tank top that’s nearly no-sew (about 6 inches of stitching) in no time. Smock it to me!Smock Tank Finish generation-t.com

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Materials:
-Plain white T-shirt
-Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye
-Scissors
-Needle and thread or sewing machine
-Plastic container from the recycling bin

Smock tee materials generation-t.com

Make it:
Click through to the iLoveToCreate blog from a complete step-by-step  photo tutorial!

Smock tank finish1 generation-t.com

[ No Comments | Posted on July 22nd, 2014 ]

How to: Frida-Style Braids with T-shirt Fabric

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite artists: Frida Kahlo. I’ve been wanting to post this tutorial for awhile now, and the occasion of her birth is the perfect opportunity. Here’s a simply way to dress up your hair using an old T-shirt, tie-dye, and scissors. FridaFinish3 generation-t.com

But first, some images of those inspiring braids from the queen of the Mexican art scene, who would be turning 107 if she were alive today:

Frida inspiration generation-t.com

 

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Materials:
-Tulip One-Step Tie Dye kit
-Plain T-shirt (size M or larger)
-Scissors
-Comb
-Hair elastics
-Bobby pins

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Make it:

Visit the iLoveToCreate blog for a full visual tutorial!

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Special thanks to my young friend, Emma, who patiently posed for the step-by-step tutorial!

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[ No Comments | Posted on July 6th, 2014 ]

DIY: Distressed American Flag Muscle Tee

Between cheering on Team USA in the World Cup and all the 4th of July barbecues just around the corner, this project is at least a fashion twofer (at least – you can save it for next Memorial Day picnic, Flag Day…or whenever you’re feeling stylishly patriotic!).

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With just a plain white T-shirt, some classic gold star stickers (50 of them, to be precise), clear tape, and fabric spray paint, you can, for just a few bucks, make a T-shirt that might otherwise retail for (gulp)…$84(!!!). Here’s how.megan-nicolay-blog-footer-1

Materials:
-Plain white T-shirt (I chose an old V-neck, but crew-neck works just as well)
-Tulip Fabric Spray paint in red and blue
-Gold or multi-colored star stickers (find them stocked with the teachers’ supplies)
-Clear tape (for best results, look for 1/2″-wide tape)
-Scissors
-Ruler
-Scrap cardboard and/or paper to mask and insert between the layers of the shirt

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Make it:
1.
Head over to the iLoveToCreate blog for my complete step-by-step tutorial!

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[ 2 Comments | Posted on June 24th, 2014 ]

Spell-It-Out Birthday Shirts (for Every Age!)

I love using words and type in my crafts (see exhibits ABCDE, and F…), so was super excited when some Scribbles Alphabet Stamps arrived in a recent crafty care package! With a friend’s daughter’s birthday around the corner, and armed with my new letter stamps and fabric paints, I knew just what I wanted to make: a series of birthday tops, each to announce the birthday girl’s age (and yes, there are number stamps, too, but I like to spell things out!).123Finish generation-t.com

I made a series of three, but if you scroll all the way down, you’ll see there’s no reason why you have to stop at the single-digit ages!

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Materials:
-Scribbles Brush-On Fabric Paint
-Scribbles Alphabet Stamps
-Tulip Fabric Paintbrushes
-Ruler

-Plain T-shirt or tank top
-Scrap paper or cardboard (to prevent the paint from bleeding through the layers of the shirt)

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Make it:
1.
For step-by-step photographed instructions, click through to the iLoveToCreate blog!

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[ No Comments | Posted on May 27th, 2014 ]

T-shirt Yarn-Wrapped Easter Egg Wreath

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For this easy, bright DIY holiday decor, I was inspired by this yarn-wrapped egg wreath I stumbled upon on Pinterest. (Oh, and check out Aunt Peaches’s yarn-wrapped eggs tutorial over at the iLoveToCreate blog!) But, being that I have stashes of T-shirt scraps rather than traditional yarn, I adapted the project to my own scrap heap (and recycling bin). Pick traditional pastels from your T-shirt stash, go for brights, or tie-dye all those shabby old white ones to make ombre eggs.

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Materials:
-18-24 plastic eggs

-18-24 lengths of T-shirt yarn, plus more for the wreath base (ideally, yarn should be stretched from 1/2″ to 3/4″-wide strips)
-Aleene’s Max Tacky Adhesive
-fabric scissors
-cardboard box (to make the wreath base)
-pen/pencil
-craft knife
-tape (optional)
-Tulip Beads in a Bottle (optional)
-Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye Kit (optional)

Egg Wreath materials generation-t.com

Make it:
Click through to the complete step-by-step tutorial over on the iLoveToCreate blog.

Finish Egg Wreath generation-t.com

t-shirt yarn wreath generation-t.com

[ 1 Comment | Posted on March 25th, 2014 ]

DIY Phases of the Heart T-shirt

I was recently inspired by a DIY phases of the moon T-shirt I saw on Pinterest, and thought it would be fun to try a heart shape in place of the moon. Though Valentine’s Day is an odd one to celebrate — it’s gotten a little commercial in the past few decades for my tastes, but I do appreciate another opportunity to tell the people dearest to me that I care about them with an extra hug, a simple handmade valentine…or a T-shirt! (PS: Did you know that the holiday is celebrated as “Friend Day” in Finland? I love that!)
Phases of the Heart Finish2 generation-t.com

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Materials:
-1 plain T-shirt (I chose purple to suggest a night sky background)
-Tulip “Slick” Dimensional Fabric Paints (I mixed about equal parts Grape and White)
-Tulip Sponge Brushes or Tulip Fabric Paintbrushes
-Freezer paper (to create the stencil)
-Pen or pencil (to sketch)
-Craft knife and cutting mat
-Iron and ironing board
-Scrap paper or cardstock
-Ruler

moonphases materials generation-t.com

Make it:
Follow the step-by-step instructions over at the iLoveToCreate blog!

Phases of the Heart Final1 generation-t.com

BONUS: Click through to the steps over at iLoveToCreate to use your scraps from the original stencil to make a second shirt!
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[ No Comments | Posted on January 28th, 2014 ]

T-shirt Transformer Scarf: Wear It Your Way!

Here’s an easy T-shirt transformation project from Generation T: Beyond Fashion (project #9, Transformer), courtesy of Homemade Holiday 101 that requires just one seam’s-worth of sewing! So if your crafty self is feeling at all unsure whether you’ll actually be able to knit that scarf in time for Christmas, grab the nearest two T-shirts (the larger the better), a pair of scissors, and a needle and thread (or a sewing machine!), and make a whole scarf-plus in about 10 minutes.

T-shirt Transformer generation-t.com

Materials:
2 T-shirts of the same size (L or XL)
Scissors
Ruler
Chalk marker
Straight pins
Needle
Thread

Make it:
For step-by-step instructions and illustrations, go to Homemade Holiday 101: 30-minute Scarf.

BONUS:
Just a reminder that Generation T and Generation T: Beyond Fashion ebooks are on sale for $2.99 throughout the holiday season. Just head to HomemadeHoliday101.com to download!

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[ No Comments | Posted on December 17th, 2013 ]

DIY: A Holiday Tree-Shirt!

Coming off Thanksgiving, a holiday that many people abbreviate to “T-Day,” of course makes me think of T-shirts….and how EVERY DAY is Tee Day! So, move over scratchy holiday sweater. Here’s a simple, no-sew holiday T-shirt (ahem, tree-shirt) that I designed as part of Homemade Holiday 101 (#homemade101). It combines techniques from the Brokenhearted tee in Generation T (project #2) and Back in Action tee in Generation T: Beyond Fashion (project #101).

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(OH, and…CLICK THROUGH TO HOMEMADE HOLIDAY 101 where the Generation T and Generation T: Beyond Fashion ebooks are on sale for $2.99 for a limited time!)

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Materials:
-Red fitted T-shirt (mine has a small percentage Lycra)
-Green fitted tank top (or similar, to layer underneath)
-Disappearing ink fabric marker or fabric chalk marker
-Ruler/ straightedge
-Fabric scissors
-Safety pin or 1″ round pin

holiday shirt materials generation-t.com

Make it:

1. Turn the T-shirt inside out and, using the straightedge, draw an isosceles triangle with a small rectangle at the bottom (aka, a simplified evergreen tree shape). My tree is about 7″ across at its widest.

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2. Use the straightedge again to mark horizontal lines from the base of the tree to the top, about 1/2″ to 3/4″ apart.

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3. Cut along the horizontal lines only, making sure to cut through only the top layer of the shirt.

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4. Cut all the way to the top, making a small snip (about 1/4″) at the peak of the tree. Tug gently at the sides of your T-shirt to stretch out the strips (so they curl a little).

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5. Turn the T-shirt right side out, and layer the green tank top underneath so you can see the shape of the tree clearly. You can stop right here and have a terrific-looking slashed tee, but forge on for another minute to get the woven effect: Take the first two strips at the trunk of your tree and loop strip #2 under strip #1. Drop strip #1. Then loop strip #3 under strip #2, dropping strip #2. And so on…

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6. …to the top! Safety pin the second-to-last loop through the top snip. Tuck the safety pin inside so it shows less, or embrace the shiny bit of sparkle. Or, for a little more flair, trim your tree with a personalized 1″ round pin (replacing the safety pin).

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7. Try it on. Then….Go sing carols! Bake cookies! Replace the safety pin at the top with a sparkly brooch so you have a shining star up on the highest bow!

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[ 2 Comments | Posted on December 2nd, 2013 ]

Fall Fashion: Decorating with Leaves, 3 Ways!

Before the snowflakes make their grand and permanent seasonal entrance, I’m stuck on fall. The leaves are so beautiful this time of year in Brooklyn. I was up in New England for peak color, but even the last few weeks in Brooklyn have yielded a lovely array of color and variety.Leaf main generation-t.com

Of course, no matter how you try to keep them, the color fades, and they become dry and brittle. Here are three projects with a common autumnal theme that, like the snowflakes I made and painted last year, help make nature last a little longer.

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INSPIRATION 1: DIY Leaf Stencil: This one starts with your basic stencil…

Leaf stencil materials
Materials:
-variety of Tulip soft paints and/or Tulip 3D Fashion Paints (in shades of red, orange, and yellow)
-Tulip sponge brushes and/or Tulip sponge pouncers
-variety of pressed leaves for inspiration
-sheet of card stock (or scrap manila folder)-pen or pencil
-scissors or craft knife and cutting mat
-plain T-shirt (lighter colors work best, but white is not required!)
-paint palette (or a plastic container from the recycling bin)
-scrap paper (optional) for inserting between the layers of a T-shirt

Make it:
For complete step-by-step instructions, visit the iLoveToCreate blog.

Leaf stencil paint finish

INSPIRATION 2: Reverse Leaf Stencil: This is the same concept as the stencil out of card stock, but you’re instead using freezer paper as your mask, and painting the space around the leaf.

Leaf reverse materials

Materials:
-variety of Tulip Fabric Sprays (in shades of red, orange, and yellow)
-variety of pressed leaves for inspiration
-sheet of freezer paper
-pen or pencil
-scissors or craft knife and cutting mat
-iron and ironing board
-plain T-shirt or onesie (lighter colors work best, but, again, white is not required!)
-scrap paper (optional) for inserting between the layers of a T-shirt and to protect your work surface from paint

Make it:
For complete step-by-step instructions, visit the iLoveToCreate blog.

Leaf reverse peel

INSPIRATION 3: Glitter Leaf Appliqué: Like the reverse leaf stencil, you’re using the actual leaf shape (rather than the negative space) to create your decoration. The best part about this one? No waiting around during drying time–since there is no drying time!

Glitter leaf materials

Materials:
-Tulip Fashion Shimmer Iron-on Sheet (in gold)
-variety of pressed leaves for inspiration
-ballpoint pen
-scissors or craft knife and cutting mat
-iron and ironing board

-plain bib, T-shirt, or onesie

Make it:
For complete step-by-step instructions, visit the iLoveToCreate blog.

Glitter Leaf finish

Stay tuned next week for one more way to use autumn leaves as inspiration for decorating fabric. (PS: I made myself a really rad upcycled skirt!)

[ 1 Comment | Posted on November 26th, 2013 ]