Trees are showing off their wonderful fall colors, there’s a crisp feeling in the air, days are shorter and Saturdays are spent cheering on one’s favorite college football team. You know what all that means?
Yes, it’s time to dig out the boots and flannels. But, perhaps it’s time to gussy up your wardrobe. Hmmm, I wondered, “Could we do that with Stencils??” You’re darn tooting we can!
Did you know that StencilGirl has GINORMOUS (12" X 24") stencils that were created for home decor purposes? Well, they are absolutely perfect for use in so many other ways. I happened to have a couple and thought they’d be great to use to distress a flannel shirt or two, maybe three, okay, half a dozen or so. Can you actually have too much flannel?
Distressing is all the rage and all you need is some bleach and all-cotton clothing. I love using it on the flannel as you have NO idea what color you will get after applying. Adventure and art - what a winning combination!
Inexpensive shirts can be found at Wal-Mart, Sam’s, Rural King and my buddy Krystie scored me an Eddie Bauer one for $1 from a local thrift store!
I experimented with a variety of types of bleach and settled on the bleach pens for their viscosity. I squeeze the bleach out of the smaller end onto the stencil. Because I want as little seepage under the stencil as possible, I use Pixie Spray to hold the stencil firmly against the fabric. Also, put a piece of cardboard inside the shirt larger than the stencil area to avoid seeping through to the other side.
To get the drips and splotches, hold the bleach pen about 2 feet above your shirt and squeeze. (I guess at this point I should mention wearing an apron unless you want impromptu distressing of what you are wearing.)
Once you put the bleach on the stencil, use a scraper to move it across the fabric. The bleach starts to work immediately. When it gets to the color of your liking (anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour), throw it in the sink with running water or do a quick load of laundry. I get a little seepage, but that’s part of the handmade, distressed look, don’t you think?
See why the large stencils are so fabulous for the backs of these shirts? Above I used the 12" x 24" Daisy Wildflower Stencil by Jennifer Evans on a black & white shirt. The bleach turned the image orange.
Chantilly Citrus Companion by Terri Stegmiller in 12" x 24" is perfect for the back of a shirt! I cut the stencil in half and just used the flower part.
Of course, I had to try my most favorite Free as a Bird stencil by Andrea Matus deMeng the front of this shirt. The scraper is new to me and I love it. It's a Messemeister Silicone Bowl Scraper and does a fantastic job moving the gel across the fabric and stencil. These sweet birds may get a little stitching!
Have a bucket of hot soapy water ready to throw your stencils in when you are done. You’ll need to wash the Pixie Spray off as it picks up fibers from your clothing. Hand sanitizer works, also to clean your stencils from the Pixie Spray and fibers.
These were created with the Daisy Wildflower and Plumeria (both designed by Jennifer Evans) Stencils, 12" x 24"
Happy Fall and Flannel Shirt Weather, Ya'll!