Monday, August 24, 2009

thrifted tee shirts with cool graphics, made over

Many times when I am thrifting, I will find an awesome shirt with super cool graphics, but in the wrong size for the recipient I know would love it. So I came up with this quick and easy solution. Seriously, this one is easy as pie....

I bought a t-shirt at the thrift store with a seriously fun Dr.Seuss pic on the front and it was only $2.

The good news- my son Mathes loves "Green Eggs and Ham"

The bad news- the shirt is an adult size Large.

The good news- I own a pair of scissors, lots of pins, and a handy dandy sewing machine.

So I laid the tee out flat, and cut around the graphic I wanted. There was some other writing underneath the pic that I did not want included, so it was easy enough to just trim it off as I cut around the graphic.

I then trimmed it all fairly close to the edges, leaving a small portion of white around the edges of the yellow screenprinting for ease in sewing and also because I like the way the raw edges look once the shirt is washed, they curl up slightly. It's all about personal taste here, so love it or hate it, you get to decide. That's what so fun about this shirt, you get the final say, it's all up to you.

Anyways, so I have my graphic cut and trimmed. I then grabbed this plain green tee (bought this @ Wal-Mart for $3.50)

and placed the trimmed graphic right where I wanted it,

and then pinned it in place.

Now make sure to slip something into the shirt while you're pinning so you only pin the graphic to the front of the tee. The last thing you want to have happen is to find that you have pinned all three layers together right as you are sitting at your machine, ready to stitch everything in place. I know, I have done this myself, so I am only trying to save you the swear words now.

I like to use one of my large straight edge quilting rulers, it works like a charm and I always seem to have one laying around within easy grabbing distance.

Then with a medium-long stitch length I stitched it in place all the way around.


 And voila! A child sized tee with a fun graphic.

Mathes loves this particular Dr.Seuss story, so he was thrilled that this shirt is for him.


This would also be perfect for that favorite t-shirt that your child has outgrown, but they are loathe to give up just yet. Get them to pick out a new plain t-shirt in a larger size (like I said, Wal-Mart has them for $3.50), then have them help you as you cut out the graphic and make their "new" favorite shirt.

You can also zig zag stitch over the edges of the graphic if you prefer a more finished look over the raw one, but if you do use a zig zag stitch, I highly suggest you use some stabilizer underneath or your t-shirt will stretch as you sew and look pretty wonky in the end. I speak from sad, frustrating experience. But using a straight stitch and leaving the raw edges exposed as I did requires no stabilizer, and like I said before, I just like the slightly raw look of that method.

However you do this, there are a lot of fun ways to mix this idea up. If you decide to go ahead and give this a try, make sure to send me your end results, I would love to see it!

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