Do you have an old T-shirt that could use a new look? Try this bleach resist technique to make an urban shirt that’s completely original.
- Printed image
- Grafix Matte Frisket Film (Extra Tack)
- Spray bottle
I initially thought I could use a freezer paper stencil for this project. I tried it, and unfortunately the bleach seeped right through the freezer paper and my design was ruined. This project requires a stencil made from a stronger, more waterproof material.
Then I remembered I had a package of Frisket Film, made by Grafix. It’s a self-adhesive film plastic film that is made for masking. It has a strong seal, but it’s easy to remove without leaving any residue behind. I used the extra-tack matte film.
1) Begin by printing the image you want on your t-shirt. Remember, you will only see the silhouette of the image. I chose my bird logo.
2) Tape the film over the paper image.
3) Cut around the outside of your image. The film is transparent enough that you’ll be able to see where to cut, if you hold it towards the light.
4) Carefully remove the paper backing from the film, and adhere the film to your t-shirt. Position the film so that there are no wrinkles or bubbles.
5) It’s important that you have a very good seal, especially around the edges. I recommend burnishing the film with a smooth flat object, like a credit card.
6) Insert a scrap of cardboard inside your shirt so the bleach doesn’t bleed through to the back.
7) Next, fill a clean spray bottle with a few inches of bleach. Then go outside, because this can be messy.
8) Lightly spritz the shirt with the spray bottle of bleach. It should only take a couple of minutes for your shirt to change color. Once you’ve reached the level of lightness you want, rinse the shirt thoroughly to stop the bleaching process. Once the shirt has been rinsed, you can remove the film. As you can see, the Frisket Film gave my image a nice sharp outline.
9) Wash the shirt in the washing machine by itself once before wearing or washing with other clothing.