Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Don't Blink

By now everyone knows a couple things about me. Mainly speaking, my love for Dr. Who, and my aversion to spending money.

Well today, those two facts combine, with interesting results.

You see, last semester my friend (and future roomie!:) bought this awesome Dr. Who shirt. It had a picture of the TARDIS and the words 'Keep Calm and Don't Blink' inscribed on it.

As awesome as it was, I didn't want to shell out the twenty dollars it costs online to have my very own. Stumbling around craft sites, as I am wont to do in my spare time, I found a couple tutorials on how to make your own t-shirt design.

So I decided to make my own Dr. Who shirt! The design was easy to find online. Cool historical side note, the Keep Calm and Carry Own was a British Propaganda poster during WWII. It wasn't really popular at the time, feel into obscurity, but was recently re-found and suddenly became popular. Cool Dr. Who side note, the 'Don't Blink' is in reference to one of the most dangerous creatures on the show-- Weeping Angels. Not only are they cool, they also use Quantum Mechanics, which means they are super cool.

Back to the t-shirt!

Here is the design! I first tried to create a stencil using regular parchment paper (because that was what I had in the kitchen) but after attempting it on a old t-shirt...
 I decided that I would go with the recommended freezer paper. You see, with the parchment paper, I just tried to tape it down on the t-shirt. Freezer paper has a thin layer of wax on the bottom. With a little heat, this wax adheres to your t-shirt, creating a bond that prevents the paint from spreading.

So after a quick trip to church to grab some freezer paper (they didn't need it! ...and if they did, they still have 149 ft. of it ;) I set about cutting out the entire design.

After outlining the words, I used an x-acto (? you know those words that you say all the time but have never actually spelled?? totally having a moment here...exacto? x-acto?) knife. I decided not to try and do the TARDIS this time. I left room on my shirt in case I suddenly became ambitious. It would have been really hard to cut out all those small pieces so I left it off for the time being.

Once everything was cut out, I put the stencil on my shirt and used an iron to temporarily adhere it to my shirt. 

Then I put in all the little dots, like in the P and D, ect. Some of these didn't work-- especially the smallest A-- and so the paint bled through.

Next I mixed the acrylic paint and fabric medium I had found in the dusty shadows of the imposingly large sewing box that is shoved into the back of my mother's closet. It is rarely open, a testament to the days when my mother was crafty. Then, in her words 'I had kids' and the box remained closed.

 I generously applied the paint, hoping that the stencil would hold and I wouldn't have ruined what was a pretty good shirt to begin with. That's the problem with crafting with good things. If I had ruined that pair of shoes, I couldn't have cared less, they were falling apart anyway. However, I liked this shirt.

After waiting forever for the paint to dry, I cautiously pulled the freezer paper off. While there was a little bleeding, and it looked a little rough, I still loved the end result.

Also, considering I (or my church) had all the necessary items on hand, it cost me nothing! Now I can spend that 20 dollars on something else (oh who am I kidding, it goes into saving).

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