Friday, July 1, 2011

Kids Craft: 4th of July

Just wanted to share with you some photos of my children and my sweet nephews (they are triplets!) working on their Independence Day crafts. My nephews are visiting from New Jersey (this had become our favorite yearly tradition); and this year I decided to let them paint white shirts in red and blue paint. Each one came up with his/her own design.

Nina wanted a blue letter "n" and red polka dots around. I made a stencil for her "n" using exacto knife and contact paper.

But the easiest thing to do is to let the kids paint free-hand. Sure it's messy, but they'll have fun. The second time around Nina decided to paint in red and blue splatter marks Jackson Pollock style (she said it looks like fireworks). Some other designs boys came up with were: red and blue stripes, stars, their own initials etc.

What you will need:
100% heavy cotton white tees from Walmart, Target or  
red and blue fabric paint (or mix acrylic paint with textile medium)
craft brushes
cloth pins (optional)
plastic placemats or wax paper to slide inside the shirt while painting (for protection)

How to do it:
Prewash and dry shirts.  Your shirts may be already pre-shrunk, but it's always better to prewash (I use the dryer for drying, you can air dry to be on the safe side).  The brands of shirts sold at Walmart (Garanimals and Faded Glory) and Target (Cherokee) are really good.  Also, I recommend Anvil and Gildan brands.  Do not buy Rabbit Skin brand as they run two sizes too small plus will shrink after washing.
Slide a plastic placemat or wax paper inside the shirts securing them with cloth pins (cloth pins are optional).  Now the shirts are ready to be painted.
Paint will dry in about 6 hours (it really depends on the thickness of layers used).  After the shirts are completely dry, heat set them with a very hot iron for about 10 sec.  
Washing instructions are pretty simple.  Wash with like colors in cold water.  Dryer safe, iron safe.  Do not use fabric softener.

And here is my own little 4th of July project.  Bought Nina a beautiful chambray top at Walmart for about $5.  It came with some ugly buttons.  Replaced them with red star buttons from JoAnns.  The top is a touch big, so Nina is wearing it with a plain white tank top and white biker shorts - from Walmart of course ;)

Please let me know if you have any questions about painting on fabric.
Woops, almost forgot.  Do your kids watch Liberties Kids?  We have recently discovered this on Netflix and now my kids can't get enough of American history through Liberties Kids.  My son is asking me questions I can't answer, and have to use my "I did not go to school here" excuse, and direct all Am.Hist. questions to their Daddy ;)


  1. Have a wonderful 4th of July, my dear maya and family.

  2. cute...your daughter looks just like you in the first picture! this is a great and entertaining idea! never heard of liberty kids...will check it out.

  3. Just thought you would like to know about this company, they are open to the public and have great apparel prices on small quantities with no minimums to make a purchase. Makes a great place to get blank shirts for painting crafts and other stuff. Have a great day!



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