Monday, February 20, 2012

Happy Camper Bleach Stencil T-Shirts

There has been a pin floating around a while on Pinterest for these super cute bleach stenciled t-shirtswith the names Josh and Kate. Here it is from Homemaker:

I looked at it and thought, "Hummm. I can do that. I can do it better." So started my mission to make "Happy Camper" shirts for the boys.

We are BIG campers. Last year we set a record of six trips for the season. With my husband's schedule and the fact that we have a kindergartner at a year-round school, that's pretty good. A few years ago, I made shirts for all the campers in our group (including my husband, my sister and brother-in-law and me). They were cute, but I used an iron-on that you run through the printer. They didn't wash up all that well.

Enter the new camping season. I needed something better, so I set out to make some bleach stenciled shirts.

In the original tutorial, the letters were cut out with a Cricut and layed out on the shirts. I decided to use the outside of the Cricut cut-out to make a true stencil. For this step, it helps to have a Gypsy (, so you can lay out your design before you cut it.

I designed this super cute cut-out that says Happy Camper using a campfire and a tent for the 'A's, a tree for the 'Y' and a fishing pole for one of the 'P's. For scrapbooking, you would use the inside of the cut-out for your layout. For this project, I threw out this part and used the outside - making a true stencil.

I used white cardstock, so the color wouldn't run on my shirts. Then placed a plastic grocery bag and a piece of cardboard inside the shirt (to keep the bleach from getting on the back of the shirts). I layed the stencil on the shirt and using a spray bottle full of bleach, I went for it.

You can see I got a little carried away on got a bit of bleach on the sleeve, but it just adds character. Right?

Here's how they came out, with my happy campers modelling them. Well, not exactly modelling them, but they sure are rocking them while fishing with Dad and Pops.

I'm already planning baseball T's for next summer. I'm dying to try out freezer paper stencils. Happy Camper on the front and a number with our last name on the back. Parker has already claimed 8. His lucky number and student number at school. Cute. Right?



  1. Those turned out cute. I haven't done the bleach painting on t'shirts yet, but it seems like such a fun idea! Looks like you're in CO too. Hello from Arvada. :)

  2. Those are fun and turned out great!