Kids Week | Iron-On T-Shirt

Welcome to the first day of our annual kid’s week at Craft Craft Critique! The kids are out of school and before they (and you) start climbing the wall, we’re going to give you some ideas of kid-friendly activities to help make summer vacation fun for everyone!

Why not start off by making a special summer vacation t-shirt? We bought a t-shirt at Michael’s for my 10 year old daughter (pink, of course) and then sat down with my Silhouette Portrait and some Silhouette iron-on material to let her custom design it.

She went straight for an intricate rose design that was in my Silhouette library – appropriate, since her middle name is Rose! It’s too intricate to be easy to work with for paper applications, but it’s perfect for doing iron-on or vinyl with, where you’ll use a transfer sheet.

Bridget decided she wanted the flower on the shoulder of her t-shirt, so I sized it at a little bit over 4 inches across after measuring the shoulder area of the shirt. I flipped the design horizontally in the Silhouette software for use with the iron-on material, although it’s not technically required when you are using a design that has no text or specific right or left.

Silhouette Studio screenshot

I selected the flocked iron-on material in the cut settings window. It defaults for some reason to having cutting with a mat checked, even through the material’s instructions say not to use a mat. You need to uncheck that box and put your media into the machine without a mat.

After cutting the design out of the yellow flocked iron-on material that Bridget picked out, I peeled all of the extra areas off of the backing. It ended up looking like this:


That’s the adhesive side of the design, which is why it is that pale pink color. From the front, it looked like this:


Applying the iron-on is a semi-kid friendly project. It could be done, or at least assisted, by older kids. I chose to do it myself since my 10 year old is developmentally delayed (autistic).


The next step was to put the shirt on the ironing board and place the iron-on on the desired location on the shirt.


Then cover it all with a cloth, to protect the clear backing from the iron:

Ironing took way longer than the prescribed time on the iron-on material’s package (45-60 seconds) to get the edges of the design to adhere securely, but that may very well have been because my iron is literally decades old. Time for a new one I think!


When it was done, we had a beautiful custom t-shirt!


It’s so very hip and very pretty – and Bridget is so proud that she designed it herself! This is what happens when you ask her to model her creation and “strike a pose”. 

Bridget’s at an age where she is starting to pay a lot of attention to what she wears (even with the autism) and being able to design her own shirt was a really fun activity for her! She loves her new shirt and I expect it will get a lot of wear over the summer! It was an affordable activity too – the sheet of iron-on costs about $5 retail when you buy the rolls from Silhouette, and the Gildan t-shirt was also about $5 from Michaels.

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