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August 27th, 2008, 12:13 PM #1
T-shirt design w/bleach = Pretty Cool
Hi all. Hope all is well. I recently ran across a cool way to make your own custom t-shirt designs and thought I'd share.
This is the page that I encountered: Using bleach to make t-shirts
The technique looked easy enough, and fun, so I gave it a go. I haven't perfected it yet, obviously, but I was surprised that the first few attempts weren't that bad. Definitely promising with a little more skill.
I find it's easier to forgo the plastic film for making stencils and simply use sticker inkjet paper. That way I can print designs directly onto stickers, easily cut them out with a razor, stick them on the shirt, spray the bleach, then remove the stickers. I'm hoping to expand my range from flames to other items... maybe stuff on fire or whatnot.
And combine this technique with the cheap t-shirt website (that if I remember correctly Scott turned us onto) Cheapestees.com and how can you lose?
August 27th, 2008, 01:43 PM #2
nice, i like it
i guess i have to create some new vector pictures, those should be perfect to print out in several layers and achive some kind of grayscaling, have to try this!
thanks for the idea!
August 27th, 2008, 02:12 PM #3
Awesome...need to make a t-shirt with a Ford Mustang pony on it.
August 27th, 2008, 02:58 PM #4
i'd do someting with the lettering. doesn't work for me. jars.
August 27th, 2008, 03:49 PM #5
Old styles never die. Can I get some bell bottom jeans with that?
(which when translated means if you lived in the 60's you'd remember doing the bleach thing)My head says GYM.... But my heart says TACOS.
August 27th, 2008, 03:55 PM #6
I don't know which to be more surprised at - Out's artistic stylings branching even further, or Creatures actually posting.
August 27th, 2008, 05:36 PM #7
I've used bleach before to do a "reverse tie-dye" effect on t-shirts. And back in the day I had a pair or two of blue jeans with the random bleached pattern on them. But that was always a very uncontrolled, random type of design. Plus most of the time the areas most heavily bleached became delicate and quickly develops holes.
This technique (which I'm sure you are correct, is not new... but I've never been exposed to it before) uses bleach in a controlled fashion. And the material remains strong and for the most part intact. In fact the opposite side of the material (the inside of the shirt) you can't see the design. The bleach is applied in a light mist that just sits atop the material. It doesn't soak in.
One big reason why I'm liking it is because you can make designs that encompass the entire shirt. IOW you're not limited to the 12x12 inch square only on the front or back that the t-shirt printing service is capable of doing.
August 27th, 2008, 05:49 PM #8
August 27th, 2008, 06:06 PM #9
August 27th, 2008, 06:19 PM #10
Originally saw the Koi Fish tutorial last year (I think on StumbleUpon). Seems the tutorial is currently down for maintenance, but this site contains a link for when it comes back up:
WaffleBox | Bleach a Koi Fish onto Your T-ShirtI don't like signatures.
August 27th, 2008, 06:23 PM #11
August 27th, 2008, 06:35 PM #12
August 27th, 2008, 07:17 PM #13
I've only used old work shirts so far. 100% cotton shirts work best if you are careful. They bleach lighter and faster but you need to go light on the first spraying then wait a few minutes to see how it develops.
Tips for anyone interested in trying this:
- If you use inkjet sticker paper like I've done, then you might want to slap a quick layer of clear coat over the stencil before it goes on the shirt. This will help keep the bleach from soaking into the paper. (When I didn't use clear coat the bleach still did not soak through the stencil, but it did make the sticker difficult to remove from the shirt because the paper fell apart when I tried to remove it.)
- What works even better than sticker paper is the static cling type sticker paper. You know what I mean? The stickers that stick to glass and smooth surfaces and can be removed with no problems. That kind of inkjet paper works great! And the stencils don't fall apart so you can reuse them plus no need for the clear coat.
- And I have tried using plastic film like in the tutorial in conjunction with repositional adhesive spray. I've found that type of spray isn't really sticky enough and seems more difficult to keep it adhered to the material. Plus it is much more of a chore to razor out the stencil from plastic film. Serious hand cramps.
- If you have a clean piece of glass at hand, it works great as the underboard when you are razoring out the stencil. Makes for clean crisp cuts. But make sure it's not an important peice of glass 'cause occasionally the razor can scratch it.
- Plain, one sided, utility razors work best for me. The thin rectangle ones. Xacto knives do work but I'd rather have a sharp razor than a dull Xacto knife. I go through about 3 - 5 or more razors per design. I can't afford that many Xacto blades. But 3 cent razors, no problem.
August 27th, 2008, 07:23 PM #14
Hehe. It's pretty much just like glass etching, it seems. I was pretty good at that. Just can't afford the acid, nor do I have a way to safely dispose of it.
August 28th, 2008, 12:42 AM #15
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thats freaking amazing. Thanks for sharing the link, tips, and artwork, OuT.All 1.21 of them.
August 28th, 2008, 02:18 AM #16
You people are you satisfied with this kind of world? I'm not.
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August 28th, 2008, 12:40 PM #17
Another tip or 2...
- The "put it in the dryer stage prior to washing or wearing"... is a MUST. Do not skip it. hehe.
- The trigger type spray bottles (like a gun) generally suck. The straight up/down pump type spray bottles generally are much better at misting. Either way, always spray 2 or 3 pumps into a waste area just before you aim at your shirt. Those first few pumps almost always have some splatter. Pump with smooth, even, consistent pressure to get the best misting of the bleach.
- Don't aim directly at the material. Kinda aim over it and let the mist settle down by good ol' gravity onto the material. Sorta like dew on a grass lawn. You want the micro droplets to sit on top of the material and not soak into it.
August 28th, 2008, 03:17 PM #18
I've been using bleach to tie die for years. Every time I would ruin a favorite t-shirt cleaning the kitchen counter-- with Clorox Cleanup. It's funny they are the only shirts that I think are trashed and people complement me on them.
A black shirt or sweater (yep cotton sweaters work well too) makes a bitchin' lookin' tie dye because of the way they turn variations of a light brown in the black...
I bought a bleach pen to do some intricate stuff but haven't wrecked a suitable t-shirt yet.
Very cool Outie! Thanks for show us what you're doing!
Last edited by surreal; August 28th, 2008 at 03:33 PM.
August 28th, 2008, 03:33 PM #19
September 2nd, 2008, 03:05 PM #20
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