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Shirt apron - the Ocean

It all started with making an apron from the front of a discarded white men’s dress shirt. After I finished that project I had plenty of shirt left over. I decided to make an apron with the back of the shirt. It would have an ocean theme.

Once I had cut pieces from the shirt, I pulled out my Sharpie markers. I had five different Sharpie colors. I started by protecting the table with fabric that I had already marked on. Dividing up the main piece of fabric, I made wavy marks all over the fabric, some heavy, and some light. I ended up giving the treatment to the other pieces of the shirt.

On a different day I took the fabric pieces out to the garage. I laid out a thin plastic tablecloth, like you might use for a picnic. After putting on gloves I immersed the fabric pieces in an alcohol bath. I used a mixture of 70% and 90% rubbing alcohol.

When the ink had spread well, I wrung out the pieces of fabric. We didn't have a clothesline in the garage, so I laid out the fabric on a few layers of brown craft paper. Between our low humidity, and the paper, the fabric dried quickly.

The next step was sewing the apron. Since I had just done the other aprons, I had an idea of the dimensions that I wanted. While I was at it, I also added the ties.

I had accumulated some ocean themed stencils, and it was time to use them. Because I was working inside, I again covered the carpet with a drop cloth. A small folding table went on the cloth, covered with a picnic plastic tablecloth.

The Shiva paint sticks develop a skin over time; my Swiss Army knife took care of that. Wearing gloves and an apron, I used painters tape to attach the stencil to the fabric. Image by image, using stenciling brushes (not sponges) I applied the images to the fabric. Sitting in front of the TV at least gave my ears something to listen to while I was busy.

After another day or two of drying, the paints were ready to heat set. I covered both the ironing board and apron with paper for protection. Finally it was finished, and I was pleased with my efforts.

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