Thursday, March 22, 2012

DIY applique

I think I've adequately explained my love of Ohio University to you guys in the past.  But, in case you forgot, you can read about it here.   Over the past week, something magnificent has happened.  The basketball team went to the NCAA tournament.  And won a game!  Then, they won ANOTHER game!  That means they are in the sweet 16, which hasn't happened in a lot of years.  Long before I was even born.  When I was a student at Ohio, the thought of even making it to the tournament was ridiculous, let alone winning a game or two.  When there was about a minute left in the game on Sunday, I turned to Eric and said "If we win this, I'm SO making shirts!"  (Isn't he lucky to have me?  And he definitely did NOT roll his eyes when I said that.)  Well, we won.  So I made shirts.

I love that distressed applique look, so that's what I went for with these.  This was the first time I've done anything like this.  In fact, I'm not even sure applique is the right word.  I sewed fabric onto shirts, whatever that's called.  Here's how I did it.

I started off with some $5 kids shirts from Target. 

They had pockets, so I took those off with a seam ripper. 
I found one of Eric's old polo shirts that was in the giveaway pile.  I liked the green on it, and the stripes were wide enough apart that I could just use the green.  I also had an old ill-fitting white shirt that I used. 
I printed out my letters on cardstock and cut them out.
I cut out the fabric, tracing the printed letters.  This is where one of those cool fabric cutting machines would be handy.  I didn't mind that they weren't perfect though, since I was going for a distressed look.
Then I took some fusible tape and put them on the back of the letters...
And ironed them on a piece of white fabric that I cut out from the old white shirt.  (You could do it right on the garment, but I kind of want to be able to take off the whole patch and put it back onto another shirt when they outgrow these.)  I found that it was really important to fuse the applique on first before sewing it on.  That way it didn't move around while sewing. 
Then I started sewing around the edges of the letters.  (I left a little bit of room away from the edge so that as it gets washed, it will start to look more distressed.) 
Sew really slow.  When you get to a corner or curve put the needle down into the fabric, and lift the presser foot up to release the fabric so you can turn it however you need. 
The cool thing about the word "OHIO" is that all the letters are the same upside down.
Then put some fusing tape or batting on the back of the applique, and iron it on to the shirt where you want it. 
And sew around the whole thing
Then I cut the excess fabric off, and threw it into the washer to start the distressed look. 
I tried taking pictures of the boys in their shirts at the park.  It didn't really work.  I couldn't get the both to look at the camera and make a normal face....
or each other.....
or anything else....
This one cracks me up!
So, I just took them home and got individual pictures of them in their new shirts. 

I made one for me too!  A different one.  I used pretty much the same process, but this time I got a green corduroy from Joann's, and I sewed the Ohio (with a heart cut out where Ohio University is) right onto the shirt. Then washed it too. 
Corduroy frays well.

With the shirt on
Go Bobcats!
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