Monday, July 9, 2012

Was that a bird?

Additional musings about my particular crazy crafting style . . . while I show off my bleach pen project.

I like to have many different projects going on because lots of different kinds of things interest me and I don't like to be bored. As such, it doesn't bother me to go from one thing to the next fairly quickly. Like, how I am in the middle of cleaning my house and I get a hair up my butt about trying these Clorox bleach pen t-shirt graphics.

However, because I have so many projects going on all the time, I often think I need more focus in order to follow through on any given task. Such thoughts lead to spurts of motivation in which I make lists (as you've seen from a previous post), prioritize my projects, and clean and organize work areas.

These efforts lead to very clear-headed and decisive thinking in which I plan, for instance, exactly how many necklaces I'm going to make and exactly what they will look like, which beads to use, what findings, what the color schemes will be, etc.

Then the day comes to make the necklaces and something happens.

No, on second thought, not just something, but lots of things happen.

For instance, I put the beads together that I had planned on using and decide suddenly that the whole idea sucks and I need to re-work it. So I go in a totally different direction after spending all that time planning.

Or, halfway through the necklace I get an idea about some earrings to make and I stop to make them instead of finishing the necklace.

Or, before I even start the necklace I had planned on making, another completely different idea pops into my head because I'm thinking of someone in particular and designing with that person in mind.

These shirts were made while I was supposed to be cleaning my house, packing, and preparing to leave for my 2-month stay on Block Island. I had seen this idea on Pinterest from The Next Bird and I'd been wanting to try it for some time. She revitalized stained clothing by creating a graphic to cover the stain using a Clorox bleach gel pen.

The shirts I used had stains on them also. One was a bleach stain, the other were various stains because I'm a sloppy eater with big boobs and food just tends to land there. But these were favored shirts and I didn't want to get rid of them.

So I created several designs that would cover or mask the existing stains.

These are cotton shirts, which will bleach out easily, unlike a 50/50 shirt. A couple of them have 5% spandex, but that doesn't seem to matter. The long sleeveless one has a cotton knit top and cotton linen bottom. The loose weave of the bottom part created a lot of bleed on the bleach design, but I still love the end result.
This was taken a couple minutes after applying the bleach.
You can see my pen drawing of the design in the upper right-hand corner of this pic..

I highly recommend practicing your design on paper before taking bleach pen to cloth.

I used a double layer of terrycloth between the front and back of the shirt to prevent the bleach from bleeding through to the back of the shirt. I let the bleach pen graphic sit for 30 minutes before throwing the whole thing, terrycloth and all, into the wash. By the time I washed them, the bleach had done its magic and was practically dried up, so there was no transfer of bleach pen gel to the back or to the other shirts while in the wash (I washed all the shirts together, believe it or not).

Staying focused is good for some things, like making lists, planning, and organizing. And sticking to one's plan is good in some instances. But when it comes to creating, sometimes being easily distracted brings about wonderful twists and turns in the creative process. If I am too tied to the outcome I had planned on, I could miss an opportunity to let something spontaneous creep into the creative process, to look at a bold color choice, to create a piece that is a-symmetrical, to come up with a new earring design on the spur of the moment, or to create some fun new shirts when I should be cleaning and packing.

In other words, when I am creating, I have to remember to . . . . look, there's a bird!





I am on the coast and partying at:
Kathe with an E Anything Goes
Our Delightful Home Show Me What You Got
Kammy's Korner Trash to Treasure Tuesday
Skip to My Lou Made By You Monday
C.R.A.F.T. Making Monday Marvelous
Singing Three Little Birds Inspire Me Monday
The Ironstone Nest Transformation Tuesday
Debbiedoo's Newbie Party
Beez Rental Designs Frugal Treasures Tuesday
Centsational Girl Pinterest Challenge
Full Circle Creations All Star Block Party
Saavy Southern Style Wow Us Wednesday
Made in a Day Made You Look Linky
Boogieboard Cottage Masterpiece Monday
Primp Primp Your Stuff Wednesday
The Shabby Creek Cottage Transformation Thursday
Days of Chalk and Chocolate Link Party
The Shabby Next Frugal Friday
504 Main Tickled Pink
My Repurposed Life Catch as Catch Can




51 comments:

  1. Cute! I'm going to try it on my granddaughter's favorite t-shirt that she stained. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks, Glenda. Good luck with yours. It really was one of the easiest crafts ever.

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  2. They are adorable. I really like the sleeveless green top. So pretty.

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    1. That one is my favorite shirt too. I couldn't bare to part with it. I tried to get the stain out first, but then the color faded on that spot. So this was the perfect solution. Thanks for stopping by, Mel!

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  3. OMG,this is like seeing my life in writing. I have the SAME problem with so many projects in "process". I get bored with painting a piece so I change color and move onto the next without finishing the first one. I CANNOT visit Pinterest, already have enough crazy going on in my head.

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    1. Who am I kidding?! Pinterest is like CRACK!

      There. You've been warned.

      Thanks for visiting, Olive!

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    1. Thanks, Tammy! Just got back from your blog. You do some nice work!

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  5. I am SO DOING THIS!!!! Gotta pin it! :)

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    1. Thanks, Kammy! And thanks for hosting a great party!

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  6. This is very cute and I can imagine many cute drawings to do, thank you for this great idea.

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    1. Yes, I think the possibilities are endless. You could even combine this technique with other upcycled t-shirt projects. Thanks for stopping by, Erika.

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  7. Those are great! You should go link them up at Young House Love's Pinterest Challenge today.

    Also, I have to ask how long you've been going to Block Island and whether or not you know Lisa Silverberg or Champ Starr. They own the Hygeia House and Lisa is my husband's cousin. I LOVE Block Island. :)

    Thanks for stopping by 'a casarella earlier. I'm happy to have found your blog. :)

    --Elena

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Elena! I did hook up with another leg of the Pinterest Challenge today at Centsational Girl.

      I've been going to Block Island for longer than you can imagine. I actually lived there for a few years. I have heard of those names and I used to work for one of the only lawyers in town, and I believe Starr is the name of a lawyer there.

      Thanks again. Glad I found your blog today too.

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  8. I haven't seen this idea before- what a cool project! They look great!

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    1. Thanks, Brooke, for stopping by and leading me to your blog!

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  9. I love these. What a great idea! It would be a great project to do with my teenage niece. Thanks so much for sharing at the All Star Block Party.

    Holly

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    1. Thanks, Holly. Always happy to be a party to the party at your place!

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  10. What a great idea! I love it. I'm visiting from the newbie party! I'm your newest follower, and I would love to have you join me.

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    1. Thanks, Kathy, for the follow and the lovely comment. I'll pop on over to your place and check you out.

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  11. Hi there! I'm visiting from All Star Block Party. I LOVE this!! Especially the sun. This is such a fun idea and would be great to do with my kids. Thanks for the tutorial!! I am now a new follower and would be honored if you would visit and follow me back at http://lifeofblocks.blogspot.com/ Thanks!

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    1. Thanks so much, Anastasia, for the comments and the follow! I'll click over to your place and take a look.

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  12. Came over from Barbe's to see your bleach pen project. I also jump from one project to another to keep interested. I have a niece coming to visit this weekend who wants to work on altered clothing so I will be pinning your project as a possibility. Thanks!

    Distressed Donna Down Home

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    1. Hi Donna! Thanks for stopping by and for the PIN! I love to be PINNED! This is a great project for young people. It's fast, it's easy, and there's almost immediate gratification! Come to think of it, that's why I like it too!

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  13. Girl, these are AWESOME! You are so artistic! Thanks for visiting my blog and for the follow - I'm following you back! Love your blog!

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  14. Girl, these are AWESOME! You are so artistic! Thanks for visiting my blog and for the follow - I'm following you back! Love your blog!

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    1. Thanks, Nif, for the compliment and the follow! I think you've got it goin' on at your blog too!

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  15. This is Melissa @ daisymaebelle. Love these shirts! I am here to follow you back!

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    1. Thanks, Melissa! So glad you stopped by. Glad I found your blog!

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  16. Hi there - stopping by via the Catch as Catch Can link party on My Re-Purposed Life! Love this project - pinning it to try! Well, pinning it to my ever-expanding board that's called "Crafty Tutorials that I want to try!" LOL

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    1. Thanks for the PIN, Laura! I sooooo love to be pinned! I just got back from your blog. I may have to try that tie-dye technique. That blue and green shirt turned out beautifully. I am your newest follower!

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  17. So, what you're saying is, when Mr. B comes home with his lunch all over his shirt I could save them by drawing pretty designs on them? No? LOL I will save it for MY shirts as I have the same boob and food problem :-) Thanks so much for sharing this genius idea at the party this week! I love it!

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    1. Thanks for hosting a great party, Kathe. And thanks for stopping by. Maybe I could come up with some masculine designs. I'll have to think about that. :-)

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  18. I LOVE these shirts. I saw them somewhere last year and was going to make one, but I never did. I don't buy bleach pens, but maybe if I remember next time I'm at the store, I'll pick one up.

    GREAT job!

    gail

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    1. Hi Gail! I don't buy them either, but I ran out and bought one just to do this craft. You won't regret the purchase. Thanks for visiting!

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  19. SO COOL. There are so many possibilities for bleach designs! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. I just got back from your blog and I'm your newest follower! I love how you took those two old bridesmaids dresses and made them into something classic and beautiful. You are quite a talent.

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  20. This is SOOOO COOL!!!! These shirts really rock... I just LOVE them!!
    I have to try this... very very kewl....
    Thanks for sharing at the ALL STARS BLOCK PARTY!!!

    Carri
    simplydonewright.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Carri! And for hosting a fabulous shin-dig!

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  21. Hello, thanks for comment on my blog. I am now your newest follower :) I have seen these bleach pen designs, your are great by the way. A good use of a stained shirt. Curious, anyone out there know how long the hold up after bleaching? I have heard the bleach weakens the fabric and is starts desolving.

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    1. Hi Connie! Thanks for the visit and the follow. I have washed each of these shirts twice since the initial bleaching was done. So far, so good. I'll keep you posted.

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  22. Hi - Connie is correct, bleach does degrade the fabric each time the treated area becomes wet or is washed and you will eventually have a hole. The easy way to stop the bleach action and preserve the fabric is to rinse the garment in a fairly strong distilled vinegar solution and then rinse all of the vinegar out in cold water. This basically neutralizes the bleach. (Learned this a LONG time ago from my Mom when bleaching jeans and cutoffs was all the rage).

    Love the designs, what a great idea!

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    1. Thanks, Elizabeth! Apparently you can also neutralize bleach using hydrogen peroxide. Hopefully, the double rinse I used when I washed them will do the trick. If not, at least I got a little more wear out of them than I would have if they had gone to the garbage heap with stains on 'em.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  23. Just stopping by to tell you I love your blog! I am passing on to you the Versatile Blogger Award. For details go to my blog @ http://perfectimperfectionsbyjeanne.blogspot.com/2012/07/versatile-blogger-award-and-thanks.html. Congratulations!

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  24. I featured you today! I got a late start today! Hope to see you again this week!
    Kim@madenaday

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  25. Brilliant! Honestly, this is such a good idea that I can’t believe I’ve never done before! I am so sick of all my shirts that I was close to abandoning them for a whole new wardrobe, but this is the perfect solution for giving my clothes a much needed makeover without spending my whole paycheck from Dish. Hooray! Where do you come up with such good ideas? Do you have any places in particular that give you inspiration? I’m a big fan of HGTV and DIY Network for project ideas. I record everything I see on those channels; it has turned into quite the addiction! Luckily, we have the Hopper DVR in my home that comes with loads of recording space since my husband does not share my love for DIY. I wish I was clever enough to think of ideas on my own though! I give you tons of props on this one. I can’t wait to try it!

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    1. Thanks, Max. Glad you like it. Do you have a blog? I couldn't get to anything by clicking on your name. I got this idea from Pinterest, where I get lots of ideas. I absolutely love Pinterest. And I get inspiration from my fellow bloggers. Have fun with your bleach pen. Let me know how it works out.

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  26. Wow, I love the yellow shirt the best. : ).. I love the sunny design on it, and the fact that I could actually do something like that too. Great idea!

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  27. I love this idea and the fact the shirts were stained is simply a plus. I could see doing this with script in either French or English. Thank you for visiting my blog and following me. I also followed you back using Google Connect. Kitty

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    1. Thanks Kitty. I appreciate the comment and the follow. I'm also thinking about some new graphics for the bleach pen but I hadn't thought about script. What a good idea.

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