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June 6, 2012

Bleach Pen Stenciling


It's been a busy week with big painting projects around here! And baby boy is finally sleeping through the night = much more energy for me! I am finishing up the trim in my bathroom and my husband started ripping up carpet in our boys' room, painting the floors and walls. I'm excited about the vision I have for their space-it will be fun and colorful and 100% boy!

Now, whenever I'm doing a big project that takes weeks to finish, I need to take breaks for quick little craft ideas I've been storing in my head. So, I experimented with the idea of using a Clorox bleach pen and stencils on a t-shirt. I first saw freehand bleach pen shirts  last summer from a blog called Show, Tell, Share and did a freehand numbers one for my son that turned out cute.

And then, I started thinking about all the cool patterns I could make if I used stencils-turned out to be even quicker and easier than freehand because the gel is so easy to work with (and a great way to hide stains or in my case, paint spots on an otherwise nice t-shirt)

Here's what you need to make your bleach stenciled T-shirt:


Clorox bleach gel pen
plastic stencils (I used my Martha Stewart freebies)
safety goggles if you're smart (oops-I should do that next time-eyes are important!)
plastic bag or wax paper to line inside of shirt
rag or paper towels


First, lay your t-shirt flat and line the inside with plastic or wax paper to prevent bleach from bleeding all the way through.


Place your stencil where you want it on the shirt.


Put your safety goggles on to protect eyes from bleach (and open windows or do outdoors).


Use the wide brush end of your bleach pen to squeeze out gel in a circular motion onto stencil.


Carefully remove the stencil, wipe off with rag or paper towel and repeat with another design where you want your pattern to be.



Allow the shirt to dry for a few hours or overnight. It's dry when the bleach gel dries up into a whitish powder. 

Finally, wash and dry your shirt and get ready to rock an artsy, original, not-found-in-stores look! 


Pin It

I admit I've been a little self-conscious about wearing what I create (I'm a little scarred from that Bedazzler look from the 70's/80's) but I'm pretty happy with how this shirt came out and can wear it with pride.


Hope you enjoyed this little project-now remember the big projects we've been working on? 



Here's a sneak peek into the boys' room floor and wall painting project-It's really coming along and I can't wait to do the bright blocks of color, huge chalkboard wall and more stenciling. I also can't wait until I can put the boys back in this room-they've been so crazy excited it's been hard to get them to go to sleep at night in a different room (yawn...)

Stay tuned for more sneak peeks and the big reveal of bathroom and bedroom! 



Linking up to these parties.



22 comments:

  1. Love the shirt! What a great idea! I think it's totally wearable :) No bedazzler in sight!

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    1. Thanks Sarah! I appreciate the reassurance too :)

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  2. Nice project! I've shared it on my Facebook page and I'll be featuring it on my News of the Day today.

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    1. So glad you like it and thanks so much for sharing on FB and featuring!

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  3. Hi Kristina, love the way this turned out! I think my teenage daughter would love trying this. I think I will also post a link on my FB page!

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    1. Thank you, Tam! It would be a fun project to do with a teenage daughter or little girl-thanks for posting on FB too!

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  4. Interesting idea to use bleach! I never would have thought of that!

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    1. Thanks, Lisa-the bleach idea wasn't my original one, but the idea to use stencils was!

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  5. Came over from Roundup. I have to pin this to my project board - this seems much quicker than hand-painting fabrics!

    Distressed Donna Down Home

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    1. Thanks so much, Donna for your kind words and for pinning! So glad you liked it-and it is for sure much quicker than hand painting or freehand bleach painting.

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  6. So cute Kristina! I need to try this.. you make it look so simple!

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    1. Thanks, Kelley-it really is! Have fun with it :)

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  7. GREAT idea! Wouldn't have thought of that with stencils! Very creative.
    Thanks so much for linking up over at I Gotta Create!
    <3 Christina

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    1. Thanks, Christina! It was a fun experiment that went well!

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  8. Featuring you on Facebook this morning! http://www.facebook.com/pages/Igottacreate/100573240032625?sk=wall
    Thanks again for linking up at I Gotta Create!
    <3 Christina

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    1. I appreciate the exposure! So glad you liked this idea and shared :)

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  9. Just wanted to let you know I featured this as part of my BFF Open House link party wrap up! I love how this turned out.

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  10. Oh that is so cute! Saw your feature over at BFF Open House! Nice job! happy to be following you via GFC and looking forward to more fun stuff!

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    1. Thanks, Danni! I appreciate you following and glad you liked this project and looking forward to sharing more with you!

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  11. Pam from LouisvilleJune 16, 2012 at 9:13 AM

    This is a great idea. I have a weakness for graphic T-shirts and this is a way to make my own. Thanks for posting this.

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