Friday, March 12, 2010

Easy St. Patrick's Day Shamrock Crafts


It is easy to make decorated t-shirts, sweatshirts, tote bags, placemats, tablecloths, bibs, and glasses for St. Patrick’s Day.

The easiest way is to buy a shamrock stamp and some fabric paint and stamp your own creative design. Let dry and embellish with a painted rainbow, personalized writing, or flecks of gold paint. When everything dries, you will need to set the paint by ironing the fabric. Put wax paper between the fabric and the iron before ironing. If you can’t find a shamrock stamp, you can cut a stencil from heavy cardboard and paint over the stencil or cut a shamrock stamp out of a clean sponge. You can also use a heart stamp. A shamrock can be made from 3 heart stamps and a hand drawn stem.

Be sure to match the kind of paint you buy to the item you are painting. There are separate paints for metal, fabric, and glass.

Another cute idea is to tie dye the fabric before painting or decorating. It is very easy to do. Be sure to wear rubber gloves. There are several different designs you can tie your garment into. Check the RIT Dye website for ideas. Dissolve 1 package RIT dye in 2 gallons of very hot water. Immerse garment for 5- 7 minutes. Stir occasionally and remove when garment is a little darker than desired. Remove and rinse in warm water and progressively cooler water until water runs clear. Remove ties. Wash in warm water with mild detergent and rinse with cool water. Dry by machine or hang dry.

Appliqué is another way to decorate fabric. Cut shamrocks from small amounts of green fabric and fusible webbing at the same time and arrange on fabric. Follow fusible webbing instructions and fuse to fabric using a hot iron. Stitch around the edges with a zigzag stitch or outline with fabric paint to prevent fraying. Add painted accents, buttons, and trims.

Patches can be bought and fused or sewn to fabric for cute decorations. If you know how to crochet, you can make shamrocks from yarn and sew them on with quilting thread. They make a very professional looking t-shirt or sweatshirt. You can find a lot of patterns at Crochet pattern Central.com. You can buy readymade crocheted shamrocks at Etsy.com or on EBay.

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