Friday, January 6, 2012

DIY Watermark Shirts

Making your very own Watermark Shirt is as easy as a single day's work, tends to be under $10 dollars, and is a quick little craft project with a pretty little result.

I found this wonderful little DIY project on Sweet Verbena, my favorite DIY bloggers page. Be sure to check out her link on the bottom left of my page. After seeing her shirts, I just had to try this out for myself.

I've always wanted to purchase shirts like these from Aerie, Victoria's Secret, and Forever 21 to wear as sleep shirts, but with the Hunger Games movie coming out, and a lack of funds to get my own $30 official shirt- I set out to make my own!

So let's begin!

You'll need:

  • A Basic White shirt (Preferably Cotton, but it's worked for me with other blends as well)
  • Blue Gel Elmers Glue (You cannot use white. It has to be Blue Gel or this won't work)
  • Rit Dye
All of these things are easily available at any local craft store. Glue is like.. two fifty and the dye is about three dollars a box. I use probably half a box per dye solution. So if you're making a bunch of shirts, then it's worth your money.

To begin, dampen your t shirt, and place some sort of interference within it, so that neither side of the shirt is touching. I just used one of the lids of a storage container and it worked really well. This is to prevent the glue from soaking through to the other side of the shirt.

Make sure that everything is centered. Take extra care here, because I've managed to ruin a couple shirts by not having centered the seams.

Now's the fun part, and the hard part. Begin to glue your design on to the shirt. On the shirt I glued above, I did the lyrics of Safe and Sound to match with the Hunger Games theme. Unfortunately I miscalculated the diameter that the glue spreads to as it dries, so the letters became a little fuddled.

Pretty much you want to space words pretty far apart, make sure they are large, and well defined, otherwise you won't be able to read them when they're dyed.

Lay your shirts out to dry. This is the annoying part, because it takes DAYS in the winter time. I became impatient when after 24 hours mine hadn't dried, so I whipped out the blow dryer and went crazy. This works too if you're impatient like me, and didn't have the sense to make these in the summer time.

Like my Super Nintendo controllers creepin' over there? Yep, I was playing some old school Mario Cart.

Now once the glue has dried, time to soak your shirt in the dye bath. I put in about a half a packet of dye, so that the color came out nice and vibrant and the words were more legible. You can experiment with this and decide for yourself how you'd like the color to come out.

Just let it soak for a minute or two, and then ring the shirt out, and yes.... lay it out to dry... again. Needless to say, for me, I started blow drying. 

After everything's dry, toss it into soapy water and let it sit for a while to get rid of the nasty glue that's still stuck to the lettering. When there's no more stickiness left on the shirt, just toss it in the dryer (FINALLY), and you're all done!

This is how mine turned out. Nice and pink, with the insignia very brightly in the center. See what I mean, about how you should up the dye a little? Figure it's going to dry a couple of shades lighter than it comes out, and the writing is already really watery and light. 

Pretty Cute though!

Can't wait to wear mine to the Hunger Games Premier!

Also if ya'll check my shop, I'm making these shirts for other Hunger Games Fans for $15 a piece with Shipping. Only with the Mockingjay insignia though. Click the link on the top right hand side of the page!

Happy Hunger Games!

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