DIY T-Shirt Appliqué

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Make your own Rainbow T-Shirt Appliqué

This is a very easy way to turn a boring T-Shirt into a beautiful kids top that will go well with anything.

My daughter has this favourite lilac H&M T-Shirt that I got second hand for almost nothing but we don’t have anything to go with it. I get very annoyed when she picks this T-shirt and wears her favourite skirt with it that is turquoise and orange and does not look colour coordinated at all…

I am a big fan of all the Johnnie Boden kids clothes because of their great colour designs but find them much too expensive. Therefore I created a board on pinterest to collect different ideas on how to lighten up some of my daughter’s clothes.

In the case of the lilac T-Shirt I chose to put a rainbow on the front.

For years already I collect tiny pieces of colourful fabric for this kind of projects. I iron them on double sided fusible fleece so I can use them right away when I need them. I just have to cut out the shape I want and iron it onto the T-shirt.

First I sketched the image I wanted onto a piece of paper and then cut out the pieces from the fabric scraps I already had ironed onto the double sides fusible fleece.

For the rainbow I used different coloured bias tapes because I could stretch it on one side, making it bend like an arch. If you don’t have bias tape, here is a tutorial on how to make it. But you can also use any other fabric and cut it in an arch shape. Then you should sew around in a tiny zigzag stitch like I did around the cloud.

I ironed the rainbow onto a freezer paper, hoping that it would keep the sticky side after pulling the paper off again but that didn’t work, so I used strips of the double sides fusible fleece between T-Shirt and the bias tape rainbow to make it easier to sew it on.

My daughter is very happy that she can wear her favourite top with her favourite skirt now.  (although she almost started to cry when she first saw that I changed her T-Shirt without asking her).

Below another top that I made for my daughter about 4 years ago. The balloon strings are just drawn on with a black fabric pen. I hope that gives you lots of new ideas to refashion your clothes. And before I forget… You can find lots of interesting designs if you google “freehand machine embroidery”.


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All the Best, Tina