Renn Faire Privateer Gone Mom.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Kraken maternity tee- Bleach design tutorial

There's a saying that Necessity is the father of invention.  I say, being unique makes inventing a necessity.

I've never fit into a specific scene with my tastes in anything.  I love pop culture, nerd culture, rock culture, hippy culture... music, clothes, food, lifestyle... all sort of mesh into a web of seemingly random, eclectic preferences.  

That's not to say I like everything.  I am actually very picky about the different things from different scenes that I enjoy.  So being a 20 something mom is hard.  Because I want to incorporate this small piece of that, with a dash of this, and a glob of that-thing-over-there into my personal and parenting style, but there's NOTHING OUT THERE.

It's become easier with the popularity of pirates, but they're slowly being elbowed out by things that I don't like, so I don't pay attention.  Most pirate things for women and girls are pink and/or insanely sparkly, which I don't mind in moderation, but I'd like to go out in public without making someone want to vomit rainbows.

So I've had to get crafty.  Which usually I am totally okay with.  Sometimes though, it's just a pain.  Why can't there be a designer out there that has a direct plug into my brain that makes the things I want, for a decent price?!  Anyway...  

If you follow me, you know that Baby #4 has been dubbed The Kraken.  The few maternity sites I have found that carry alternative style clothes are ridiculously expensive.

So, as stated before, necessity and invention. 

I needed a unique t-shirt for this pregnancy.  I don't have $60 to spend on said t-shirt.  Hellooooooo, Pinterest!  

I've seen dozens of bleach tutorials.  A lot of them say to use a spray bottle, make your own bleach pen, use parchment paper to put your design on and iron it to the shirt so the bleach doesn't bleed underneath.  I'm a rebel lazy, so I chose to skip a majority of the recommendations.

I got my t-shirt, got my bleach, a small glass jar, a new paintbrush, cardboard, tape and a piece of paper.  Sketched out my design, cut it out, and taped it to the t-shirt, which I put the piece of cardboard in to avoid bleeding through the back.  Painted around the edges of my design with the bleach then flicked it around a few times for some 'bubble' spots, and voila!!

One of the tutorials I've browsed mentioned that different black shirts will bleach to different colors!  Not sure how to tell the difference, but don't be surprised if your shirt comes out a color other than orange.
At the moment the shirt is in a gentle wash cycle with a touch of homemade laundry detergent to get any extra bleach out before it eats a hole in the shirt fibers (I took that pic while the shirt was still bleach damp, and now I smell like a sparkly bathroom!).

I am incredibly happy with the way it turned out (will update if the wash changes anything) and fully intend to raid my local thrift store for more plain maternity tees to play with!  I'm also thinking the baby needs a custom Kraken onesie, so keep an eye out for that post, too!

Have you done any bleach products?  I'd love to see/hear about them!


  1. that looks awesome. I'm petrified of bleach, but these projects look so cool, I might have to give it a whirl.

    1. I've been avoiding them for a while because of the bleach factor. Just wear clothes you don't care about while doing it!