Up until Sunday, I had a love/hate relationship with t-shirt stenciling. I picked stencils that were just shapes and used regular paper as my stencil. Terrible idea.
The best resource out there for stencils is stencilry.org. Not only do they have a pluthera of stencils of everything imaginable (including Bob Saget), but they also have tutorials and how-to’s. All these tutorials recommend using freezer paper.
I’m such a minimalist when it comes to crafting. I try to do as much as possible with as little as possible. I never imagined that I would have a use for freezer paper, but upon purchasing it, I’ve found a multitude of uses: stencils, covering soaps in their molds, putting paint on it. Okay, maybe three. Still, that’s more than without it.
For the first freezer paper stencil, I picked one I thought to be relatively easy. These tiny little army men. Looks like a piece of cake, right? Well those little triangles between their legs are a separate piece that need to stay in place. Luckily, my plastic coated freezer paper made this dream a reality.
1. Place freezer paper over the regular paper print out of what you plan to stencil. Some people actually print it out on freezer paper. I’m too scared.
2. Take an exacto knife (its what I normally use) to cut out your stencil PLASTIC side down. Do not to this on your vinyl table cloth like I did. You will cut it. (If you do this, simply turn the tablecloth around so that it is covered by a bowl or box of wheat thins.)
3. Lay out your pre-washed t-shirt. Lay out stencil on top where you want it and iron the pieces into place.
4. Take your fabric paint and foam brush and apply the paint.
5. Let sit until dry. Peel off stencil. Touch up. Iron design to set paint. Wash.
The toughest part is cutting out the stencil. Since I have no patience, it’s almost maddening. I’m happy with the way that this one turned out and I am looking forward to doing more stenciling….away from my tablecloth.