One of the biggest rewards of crafting is seeing a high priced item at a swanky boutique and grinning – because you know you can go home and make it for a fraction of the cost. On a recent trip to New York City, I came across a wildly adorned (and very expensive) rock star T-shirt that had all kinds of hand-applied crystals all over it. Talk about going from grunge to glam! I could hardly wait to get home just so I could make my own version. I decided to take it up a notch by starting with a faux-vintage tee and adding on some sequins and glitter too. The various sparkly textures play off each other nicely without being too over the top. Note: This project will take one solid afternoon (or two chick flick DVDs), but will be worth every second of effort.
Tricked Out Tee
(NOTE: Because I work for Duncan, I have access to all their fabulous products, so I used a lot of them on this shirt!)
1 T-shirt with a simple image
1 piece of cardboard lined with freezer paper to slide inside the shirt
1 large package of crystals that match the image (I used these from Tulip, and you will need about 100 of them, depending on how much you want to apply)
1 crystal iron-on heat tool (I used this one from Tulip)
Polyester glitter (made for use on fabric, like Tulip Fashion glitter)
Sheet of paper
Permanent fabric adhesive (I used Aleene’s Fabric Fusion)
1. Slide the cardboard inside the shirt.
2. Working on a flat surface, open the crystals and lay them in front of you.
3. Working on a small section at a time on the shirt’s image, pick up a crystal with the crayon and place it on the fabric. Use the heat tool to adhere it by pressing it on the crystal until its adhesive backing melts.
4. Place more crystals where you want them (in groups of four or five work good), and then continue applying them the with heat tool.
5. Add the glitter. Work over a sheet of paper. Fill in other areas of the image with the glitter by painting the surface with the permanent fabric adhesive, and pouring the glitter over it before it dries. Tap off excess.
6. For other areas, apply the fabric adhesive and add the sequin trim. Let it all dry.
7. When finished, remove cardboard. Gentle wash, inside out, hang dry.
Tips and Variations: If you don’t want to fill the entire areas with crystals, just use them on the outline of the image. You can choose to apply the crystals very close together, or spread out a bit. The closer they are, the more you will need and the longer it will take. If you do not have a heat tool, you can apply them with a mini-iron, standard iron, or permanent fabric glue.
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