DIY Patriotic T-Shirts for the Family
We love patriotic holidays in our household. It’s so much fun to dress up and go to the parade or barbecue in style wearing our family t-shirts. I recently made these DIY t-shirts using my Cricut Maker. I’m excited to share them with you!
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If you have been following me for a while, you already know that I love my Cricut Maker. There are so many great DIY projects you can make with this cutting machine! Cricut asked me and a group of other bloggers to design a Cricut t-shirt collections to feature on their website. Each month a new group of 3-5 t-shirt design files will be chosen from the group and available on Cricut Design Space for you to make.
The fun thing about this challenge is that each collection will include styles for both men and women as well as adult and child-sized graphics which will enable you to make t-shirts for your entire family! You can purchase blank t-shirts or tank tops at local craft stores or even Amazon. For my projects, I used a few old white t-shirts we had laying around. Why spend money if you don’t have to?
For this patriotic t-shirt collection, I designed a number of different styles but only used the ones I liked the best. I will feature the others at a later time. These files are not available on the Cricut site just yet but will be soon if they are approved (cross your fingers)! I also plan to sell my SVG design files in my new Chambray Blues shop which will be coming soon!
- red and royal blue Cricut Heat Transfer Vinyl
- 2-3 white t-shirts in various sizes (I used a 3T baby onesie, an XL and an XXL adult sized shirt.)
- Cricut EasyPress (A traditional iron or other heat press would also work.)
- EasyPress Mat (Or an ironing board.)
- Cricut Maker
- Cricut light grip mat
1. Choose a t-shirt file to make in Design Space. There are a number of patriotic files currently available. Be careful to select files designed specifically for t-shirts, if the design is intended for other purposes you may have trouble cutting it.
2. Cut the files as directed by Cricut on your machine. Be sure to place your heat transfer vinyl on the grip mat with the shiny side DOWN. Also, be sure your design is REVERSED. If not, select the edit button, then the mirror setting. Cut all the pieces for your design before assembling.
3. Trim away excess vinyl. I like to cut away any extra material and save it for another project. It’s too good to waste!
4. Weed out any “white space” from the cut image with the weeding tool. That is, from the wrong side (non-shiny side of the vinyl) pull away any vinyl that will not be needed in your design. You will end up with your design and a somewhat sticky backing. View it from the right (shiny) side, to be certain it is correct and also still intact.
5. Place your vinyl shiny side UP on your t-shirt (the sticky backing will hold it in place). Be certain that your design is centered evenly over the center front of the shirt. It is helpful to fold the shirt in half and mark the neckline with a pin so you can get accurate placement. I recommend placing your vinyl about 2″ down from the neckline on most styles. You may need to hold it up to a mirror and check the placement before moving on to the next step.
6. Once your design is in place, cover it with a pressing mat or press cloth.
7. Heat your EasyPress to 340 degrees F. (If you are using a different vinyl you may have to adjust the temperature.) If you are using an iron, use the cotton or linen setting with no steam.
8. Press your design in place for 20 seconds (you can set the timer on your EasyPress for this). Press the design a little at a time if you are using an iron, be sure to lift the iron up to reposition it. Do not rub it side to side or it will affect your results.
9. Turn the shirt over, cover it with the press mat and press again on the back side for an additional 15 seconds.
10. Turn the shirt over, let it cool slightly. Remove the clear plastic material and reveal your design. Check to be sure all edges have adhered to the patriotic t-shirts. You can press the vinyl again if needed, or use a weeding tool to hold it down to the warm fabric until it melts in place. Be careful not to overpress your vinyl. I have made this mistake and created scorch marks from the iron. If you have this problem, try dabbing the marks with white vinegar until they disappear.
You are finally ready to head to your next patriotic event in style wearing your red, white, and blue! Enjoy!
Still looking for more t-shirt inspiration? Here are a few other posts you will also love!
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