Wear your imagination | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 01, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, February 01, 2018


Wear your imagination

Growing up, instead of choosing to wear uncomfortable and oddly coloured abominations that some t-shirts can be, I decided to make my own. Ordering customised t-shirts on the internet might seem easier but can be pricey. Through Google and websites like Pinterest, I found some pretty cool ways to create designs that I wanted; fabric painting seemed to be the easiest method to try out. 

There are certain techniques to master in fabric painting. Among them, stencil painting is the easiest for a beginner. You can just place any readymade stencil over the t-shirt and use brush and colour to fill the gaps. To avoid painting on certain areas, you can place masking tape and remove it after you're done. In dot painting, all you have to do is to dip the end of a pencil or cotton bud in colour and create the design. Block painting means painting the fabric with stamps, which is very easy and can be done using vegetables at home and is considered a fun DIY project too. Tie-dye and freehand painting are for advanced crafters and can be perfected if you're experienced enough. 

Fabric painting requires few ingredients and the time for a piece to dry depends on the method and the fabric used. The basic requirement for stencil painting is white glue, acrylic paint, foamy shaving cream, different sized brushes, mixing utensils, and an iron for heating the colour and fixing it on the fabric. These items are available in any stationary shop, but to get them at a cheaper price, the stationary wing of the New Market is always a better option.

Mix one-part glue with two-parts shaving cream, then add the paint to it. Add this mixture to stencil and place the stencil on the fabric. Give the fabric 24 hours to dry out. After the paint has dried out completely, heat the fabric with an iron to permanently set the colour to the fabric.

Most crafters suggest fabric painting be done on tightly woven cotton because it doesn't let any paint seep through the threads. This is why cotton is easier to draw on compared to silk, rayon, or any other loosely woven fabrics. Use a newspaper or a board of some sort inside to avoid paints seeping into the back of the t-shirt.

If you're into DIY projects that don't consume a lot of time and don't cost a lot, fabric painting just might be what you're looking for.


Aateeya Saabeen, who scarily resembles a koala in looks and in sleeping patterns, likes to take day-long walks with her lobster. She believes her Hogwarts letter got lost in the mail because they misspelled her name. Leave her a message at www.facebook.com/aateeya.saabeen

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