How to Decorate Kids' Shirts


Bull's-Eye Tank Top
This colorfully designed kids' shirt hits the bull's-eye.
This colorfully designed kids' shirt hits the bull's-eye.

This eye-catching wearable craft is a cool tank top with bright bursts of radiant color. Both boys and girls will enjoy making this kids' craft.

What You'll Need:

  • White tank top
  • 2 rubber bands
  • Concentrated powdered dye (fire engine red, golden yellow, and cobalt blue)
  • 3 squeeze bottles
  • Soda ash
  • Large self-sealing plastic bag
  • Scissors

How to Make Bull's-Eye Tank Top:

Wrap 2 rubber bands around tank top.
Wrap 2 rubber bands around tank top.
2007 Publications International. Ltd.

Step 1: Lay tank top on a flat surface. Grasp center of shirt through both layers (front and back) and wrap first rubber band tightly about 2 inches from center. Wrap another rubber band about 2 inches farther away from center than the first band.Step 2: Wearing rubber gloves, mix the dye. Pour 1/2 cup hot water into each squirt bottle.

Add soda ash to each bottle.
Add soda ash to each bottle.
2007 Publications International. Ltd.

Step 3: To one bottle add 1 teaspoon yellow dye, to another add 2 teaspoons red, and to the last add 2 teaspoons blue. Add 2 teaspoons soda ash to each bottle. Screw lids onto bottles tightly and shake well to mix.

Squeeze blue dye 2 inches out from last rubber band.
Squeeze blue dye 2 inches out from last rubber band.
2007 Publications International. Ltd.

Step 4: Place rubber-banded shirt on work surface. Carefully squeeze red dye on center of shirt, squirting into crevices and folds. Apply yellow dye to area between rubber bands, again squeezing into folded areas. Squeeze blue dye about 2 inches beyond last rubber band.

Step 5: Carefully place dyed shirt into plastic bag, seal, and allow to set for about 3 hours.

Step 6: Remove shirt from bag and carefully rinse one section of the shirt at a time, trying to keep dye from running over areas of shirt that have been dyed a different color. Continue rinsing until water from each section runs clear.

Remove rubber bands from shirt.
Remove rubber bands from shirt.
2007 Publications International. Ltd.

Step 7: Remove rubber bands. Lay shirt flat to dry, or place in clothes dryer with an old towel.

TIP: If the weather cooperates, do this project on a table set up outside. Kids can even invite a few friends, since each bottle of dye will make several shirts.

The tuxedo shirt gets a makeover in the next wearable craft.

For more clothing projects and kids' crafts, go to: