Learn how to custom color store bought iron-on letters to make this adorable Valentine’s Day Onesie! You guys, something CRAZY happened to me the other day! It was a Saturday and at the moment, on Saturdays, we have O signed up for a couple of activities through the park district so he can burn off some energy. He goes on Saturday and AA takes him so I don’t have to drag the baby with and they can spend some time together. So after his class was over, I was at home working when my phone rang. It was my husband who said “So, I’m at the craft store…” Say, what?!?!?! And then he said the most wonderful sentence I’ve ever heard…”Do you need anything?” Someone offering to buy me things from the craft store?! It does not get better than this! But I mean, the husband-at-the-craft-store-alone part was pretty crazy anyway. Don’t get me wrong, Aa is also an architect, he’s very creative. But more along the lines of figuring out what spaces should look like and choosing furniture, not so much craft projects. But he’d decided he wanted to make a ridiculous gag gift shirt to make fun of his buddy’s love for a losing football team so there he was. He came home with some iron-on letters and printable transfer paper and ended up not using the iron-on letters.
I had those letters in a pile with the receipt to return but in the middle of the night, when I was awake (I’m having that problem where baby finally starts to sleep longer but then you keep waking up wondering if she’s ok. Moms and dads, I know that happens to you too!) Anyway, I was lying there awake when I started wondering if I could change the color of those iron-on letters. Because there are a lot of situations when they could be handy and way faster than a stencil or something. Plus I write a lot of tutorials where I use stencil either cut by hand or with a cutting machine and I know not all of you have the time or the equipment for that. And you’re in luck because my strategy worked! I whipped up this cute Valentine’s Day onesie for baby V the next morning and it was super fast! You guys, I’m so excited about this because these letters usually only come in a handful of colors or if they have the color you want, it’s not the font you want. But they ALWAYS come in white! So now you can totally customize them for yourself!
How to make a Valentine’s Day Onesie with Custom Colored Iron-On Letters
1. Ok, so the important thing about your iron-on letters is that they need to be flocked (that’s when they’re covered with that soft fuzzy surface. And they need to be white.2. Peel off the letter that you want to use. The instructions for my letters say not to peel the plastic off until after you’ve ironed it, but it didn’t seem to be catastrophic to ignore that.
3. Mix some textile medium with the color of acrylic craft paint you want to use. I used about 4/5 textile medium to 1/5 paint. Or about 4 drops of medium and 1 drop of paint. I was only painting one letter at a time so adjust that if you’re doing a bunch the same color. Because the transfer medium is white, be aware that your color will come out a little lighter than it is in the bottle.4. Using a fairly dry brush, apply the paint to the soft flocked side of the letter. Work it back and forth to cover the letter. Don’t glop it on thickly. The purpose of the textile medium is to keep the paint flexible and allow the letter to stay soft after it’s dry. 5. Let it dry thoroughly!
6. Then arrange your letters on the fabric (tshirt, onesie, tote bag etc.) Now, the directions for my letters instructed me to leave them on the plastic (which I did not do) and then to cover with a cloth and iron. When I covered mine with a cloth, they stuck to the cloth a bit. So I ended up carefully pressing them directly with the tip of my iron until they started to stick to the onesie and then pressing as directed. I would really recommend you test this out with your letters and your iron on a scrap of fabric first to see which way works best for you. Use a Q or a Z or something. 7. And that’s it, follow directions for washing etc.
I was SOOO excited to be be able to successfully change the color of these iron-on letters. And the combination of craft paint and textile medium means they still feel soft and flexible instead of kind of rubbery and thick like you might get with fabric paint. I think this is a great technique because this is so much faster and much much easier for those of you who don’t have a cutting machine! Let me know if it works for you! Enjoy!