Butterfly Bleached Tee

Isn’t this little t-shirt I made Princess Thundercloud adorable?  I mean, if you’re a five-year-old. And by the way, I took this photo in October…we still have snow on the ground and no hydrangea leaves to be seen now.


I’m a little addicted to making bleached tees, I must admit. To make one, you’ll need freezer paper (it’s waxy/plastic on one side and paper on the other), a tee shirt, and some bleach in a spray bottle.  I blogged about making a batty bleached tee in October, so the following is from that post, just so you can see the process.

Bleaching is a fairly inexact way to “dye” a shirt, so each one will be a bit different.  I just took a deep breath and repeated, “It will be fine” about a thousand times to cope with that. Not that I like control or anything.


To make it, I printed some bat clip art  from Word, traced it on freezer paper, and cut that out.  You could cut your freezer paper to fit your printer and print directly onto it, as well. I punched out a few other small bats with a punch I already had.

I used my Big Shot and a butterfly die and circle dies to cut out the freezer paper for this butterfly shirt. You could also just print some from the internet and cut them out.

When everything is cut out of the freezer paper, iron it waxy side down onto your shirt.

Slide a piece of wax paper inside the shirt, so the bleach doesn’t bleed through to the other side. Unless that’s the look you want, of course.


Fill a small spray bottle with about 1/3 bleach and 2/3 water and spray away.

Lay the shirts somewhere flat to dry.  I put mine on the deck because bleach is a migraine trigger for me.  The things I do for my children.  In fact, I did all the spraying outside, as well.  And I ended up with no migraine, so that’s a good thing!

When the shirts are completely dry, just peel off the freezer paper and be impressed with your artistic self!

Before letting the hooligans wear them, I washed them(the shirts, not the boys) by themselves, with a color catcher and about 1/2 cup vinegar, in cold water.  All the bleach washed out, but didn’t bleach the shirts anymore.  I’ve since washed them with the boys’ regular loads of darks and they did no harm and stayed the same.

It’s a one-of-a-kind look for just a few dollars, instead of paying artsy prices for a t-shirt she’s going to outgrow, anyway!


7 thoughts on “Butterfly Bleached Tee

  1. What a great idea! Thanks for stopping by my blog and fb. I love your blog, you have some really super projects that I’ll surely copy so I will be following you! So nice to “meet” you! Carolyn

  2. Cute idea!! Shirt turned out so cute!! This is a great way to make a holiday shirt instead of buying one. Thanks for the great idea!!

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