Thursday, June 16, 2016

The perfect $7 Father's Day gift you can make in 7 minutes!!!

If you're like me and you tend to wait until the last minute when it comes to gift buying, you might be struggling with an idea on what to get the father in your life a gift. Seeing as how Father's Day is this Sunday (June 19th, 2016), you only have 2 days to find that perfect something. Well, alongside my other favorite ideas - a personalized jersey of their favorite sports team, a weekend getaway at a local hotel that has room service, a gift card to home depot for their inner construction worker - I love creating my dad unique gifts that are unlike store bought gifts. 

This year, I decided to take it to the next level. Unfortunately, my happiness got the best of me and I already wrapped the gift with the last of our wrapping paper. So the finished product hasn't been photographed. I didn't even think to photograph the exact process, but I did compromise. 

What's the gift idea? A t-shirt designed by the kids! I only have one child, so my dad is getting a t-shirt designed by him. Now, this can be tweaked in any way you'd like. My son chose to draw a picture of my dad, to be traced onto a t-shirt. Underneath the "portrait", I wrote "Pop - Pop", as that's what my son call's his grandpa - my dad. You can either do as we did, or you can cover the shirt with all different artistic renderings your little love-bugs have drawn up. The tools you need? 

1 t-shirt $3 (We used one from Michael's, but you could easily use one from Dollar Tree for $1)
1 Fabric Pen $4  (this is depending on how many designs you're using on the t-shirt)
Ruler
Pencil and Eraser 
2 to 3 pieces of paper 
Hard surface - piece of cardboard

The first thing you need to do is come up with your design. 

If you choose to trace only one rendering, then all you need to do is trace the drawing on another piece of paper with a dark pen (something that can be seen through the shirt easily). If you choose to do multiple drawings, I suggest either scanning and creating a layout on the computer, or simply tracing all the drawings onto a paper in a cool design the same you would with one drawing. This would simply take more time. For the purposes of this tutorial, I'll quickly be explaining how to do a t-shirt with only one drawing. Again, you can easily tweak these instructions to suit your design, as this is fairly easy. 

After tracing your design onto a separate piece of paper to easily be seen through the t-shirt, start drawing your words/lettering on another piece of paper in black marker with a ruler. 

Then tape the lettering onto the paper the drawing has been traced on. This will allow for it to stay stable while you're tracing it. 

Now tape the drawing/lettering duo onto a hard surface or piece of cardboard. Again, you want to make sure that it stays stable. You don't want to have a moving drawing while you're trying to carefully draw on a white t-shirt with a black (or whatever color you choose) permanent fabric pen. Try to stretch the shirt carefully as well, taping in place if possible. This really helps as well. 

All that's left to do now is trace! (Hopefully you can see the design through the shirt in my picture. In person it's super visible.) With this pen (DecoFabric), I've found it to be a bit fidgety, so I had to slowly and carefully apply the marker with short easy strokes. I didn't tape down the shirt, so I ended up "dotting" all the way around the drawing. The good news is that dotting actually gave me a really clean line, exactly how I needed it to be. 

I've been told a chisel tip or brush tip black fabric marker is the way to go. The smaller/finer, the better. 

Once you've finished tracing, make sure to lay out flat and let dry for 24 hours. You don't want it to be smudged or moved, unless you really want a Van Gogh style. 

I washed our design after it fully dried, just to make sure it wouldn't fade (and if it did, I would've had time to re-do with a different pen)l, but thankfully it didn't at all! At least I didn't see a difference! Now it's wrapped and ready to bring a smile to my dad's face!

And boom! You have yourself a beautiful piece of artwork that can now be given as a gift! The best part about this idea is that you could use this for any holiday, any family member, and any fabric! Perhaps a duvet cover, pillow case, oven mitts, socks, or towel! I think this also helps with downsizing on all those awesome drawings your little one's have made. You can immortalize each one in it's own special way, without feeling bad about throwing them away! I'm currently in the process of making sheets and pillow cases with all my son's drawings! Stay tuned for that one, but be aware it's taking me a while, as I'm doing a queen sheet. I'm excited for the finish product though. 

I got this idea from a Pinterest pin I saw, where one mom literally traced all of her son's drawings onto a duvet cover. (See picture). As you can see, it's really cool when it's completed! You can check out her tutorial HERE.

So whether you haven't even started thinking about a gift to give the dad figure in your life or if you just want something extra special, this cheap and easy DIY is the perfect gift for anyone to adore! Plus who's going to hate a personalized gift from your adorable kids?!

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