Last week I shared my DIY houndstooth inspiration, and today you get to see the results. I wanted a grungy, messy look, so I used a non-aerosol spray fabric paint, which gave me drips and an uneven application. If you want a neater outcome, you can also do this project with regular fabric paint and a sponge brush. You could also cut your own stencil for this project, but I took advantage of the fact that the ones sold with Stencil 101 Décor were the perfect size for this, even though they’re intended for walls and furniture. They’re made of sturdy plastic, so they’re reusuable, and come with some helpful tips. Even though they’re not specifically made for fabric, the stencil I used certainly worked well, and the end-result is one I couldn’t wait to wear.
T-shirt (I used this one, in the color “French Toast”)
Large-scale houndstooth stencil (I bought Stencil 101 Décor, which is a pack of several stencils, but you can also buy the houndstooth stencil alone.)
Spray fabric paint (I used Fabric Spray Paint Color in Ashpalt)
Temporary spray adhesive (I used Elmer’s Craftbond Spray Glue Adhesive)
1. Slide a layer of cardboard between the front and back of the shirt. Make sure to include the sleeves, too. 2. Decide on the placement of the stencil and put small pieces of masking tape (not washi tape, as I’ve shown here. It’s not sticky enough and will come off) below the register marks on the stencil. Use a pen to mark the triangular register marks on the tape. Do this for the entire shirt, so that you’ve marked the placement of the stencil over the whole shirt before you start painting. 3. Spray the back of your stencil with temporary spray adhesive. Follow the directions on your adhesive–mine said to wait 3-5 minutes before pressing to the surface, but some don’t have this specification. Line your stencil up with the first set of registration marks, and press it firmly onto the shirt. Tape off the other areas of the shirt with newsprint to protect it from overspray (again, don’t use washi tape, use masking tape). 4. Now paint the first stencil section by spraying a coat of paint. I wanted my paint to look uneven and mottled, so I didn’t worry too much about an even coat. And drips and smudges fit right in with the grungy look I was going for. Doing this step outside is recommended. 5. Using the registry marks to line it up, re-position the stencil, re-tape off the other areas, and spray the next section of the shirt. I was able to do two sections before I had to wash the front and back of the stencil with soap and water, dry it with paper towels, and spray it with the adhesive again. 6. Continue painting, washing, and re-positioning the stencil until you’ve painted one whole side of the shirt. Set it aside to dry for a couple of hours, then repeat on the other side.