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Decorative T-Shirts
and Sweatshirts
by Sally Gumins

Hi, my name is Sally and I love to craft. Crafting gives you a sense of creativity, it comforts and eases a lot of the tension in your life, and last but not least, it's fun!

I'd like to tell you about a simple, easy way to decorate a t-shirt or sweatshirt to wear of give as a gift. The only limit is the extent of your imagination...You will need:

  • 1 t-shirt or sweatshirt
  • 1/2 yard of printed cotton or cotton/polyester fabric (I found a patriotic pattern)
  • 1/2 yard of fusible web (wonder under is one example)
  • iron
  • scissors
  • 1 bottle of tulip or similar type paint in a complimentary color to the fabric you've chosen
  • Optional: 1 bottle of fabric glue
The first thing you need to do is launder your fabric and shirt; you need to wash out the sizing so that the webbing will adhere to it. Set your iron on the Wool setting and allow it to heat up.

Then lay your fabric on the webbing (wrong side of material to rough side of webbing). Iron on the smooth side of the webbing. Keep your iron moving so you don't scorch, applying heat to each part of fabric for about 3 to 5 seconds.

Allow to cool and then pick out design you wish to use and cut around edges, being careful to follow design exactly. (It is wise to look for a pattern with simple lines).

After the material has cooled and you have cut out your design, remove the backing from the web (it will peel right off) Place the design on your shirt where you want it to stay.

Take a damp rag and place it over the design and iron for about 5 seconds (keep moving that iron). Allow to cool and you have a shirt with an appliquéd design.

The next step is to draw a line around the edge of your design with the paint bottle. Allow the paint to dry. Now you have a beautiful piece of Wearable Art to add to your wardrobe!


  1. If iron gets too hot, webbing will not stick
  2. When laundering, wash in cold water with the shirt turned inside out. Hang to dry.

Good luck and have fun!

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