Introduction: 8-bit Felt Applique' - Ms PacMan and Ghost

Picture of 8-bit Felt Applique' - Ms PacMan and Ghost

In the beginning, video games had only 16 colors and the graphics were chunky. And we were happy.

Revisit those happier, simpler times with these fun felt applique's of your favorite video game characters. Once you have all of the materials, this is an easy fifteen minute project.

I like to decorate cheap walmart t-shirts with these, but they could just as easily adorn your book bag or any other fabric surface.

Step 1: Surround Yourself With

Picture of Surround Yourself With

Start by picking out the character that you want to make. I provide two designs here: Ms. Pacman and Ghost.

You need to get felt sheets for all of the colors in the character. One sheet per color is plenty. You'll use a lot of black with these, so you may want to pick up a few extra. (MsPacman uses black, yellow, red/pink, and blue/black)

You also need to get some fusible interfacing. I got the kind with a sticky side. You'll need at least two sheets.

You'll also need some nice sharp scissors. There a lot of corners to cut, so you may want to use very pointy ones.

Finally, you need access to a good iron and pressing mat or ironing board.

Oh! and of course, you should have something to iron the applique to -- like a t-shirt or book bag.

Step 2: Transfer Your Design to a Grid

Picture of Transfer Your Design to a Grid

All of the old video game characters were drawn, and then transferred to grids. Originally the grids were 8x8 (like the aliens in Space Invaders), but later cheap memory allowed designers to expand to grids of 16x16.

I give you two grids here, one for Ms PacMan and one for a Ghost. I based the grids on images that I found online at (props to pixelparty!) Do a google image search for 8-bit art to see lots of other characters.

Once you have developed the grid, print it out on a couple sheets of paper, at your desired size. I put this on a t-shirt, so I printed them at about 8"x8". You don't have to print it in color. Gray-scale is just fine (and cheaper!).

Step 3: Cut Out the Pieces

Picture of Cut Out the Pieces

Using the printout as a guide, transfer the grid to the felt and cut it out.

Lay the cut felt on the fusible webbing and cut to match.

Do this once for the black, which will become the bottom layer, and again for all of the colored pieces in the design.

Step 4: Assemble the Layers

Picture of Assemble the Layers

Arrange the layers, thus, bottom to top

0: Fusible interfacing
1: Black felt
2: Fusible interfacing
3: All of the colors

If you use sticky interfacing, all of the layers should be pretty easy to arrange and line up.

Step 5: Iron On!

Picture of Iron On!

Follow the instructions on the interfacing package to iron-on the applique to your t-shirt or other fabric surface.

Prepare for compliments!



yoshi1 (author)2011-12-03

Would Kirby be easy to make? I am thinking about making all the different coloured Kirby's.

Doctor What (author)2008-08-06

Right now I'm working on Bowser (NES Bowser), and Mario. I've bought enough felt to do MS. Pacman, so I might make her a patch! I'll post results when I'm done. Bowser is proving to be quite difficult...

Bitsi (author)Doctor What2008-08-07

Which version are you doing? :-)

Doctor What (author)Bitsi2008-08-07

NES bowser.

Doctor What (author)Doctor What2008-08-07

The one on the far left.

Bitsi (author)Doctor What2008-08-08

So maybe a base of black, then green and brown on the next layer, and white and more brown on top? If you try to cut out holes for all of those spots on the shell, and then fit the white into them, you'll inevitably end up with gaps. Or were you thinking of something else? :-)

Doctor What (author)Bitsi2008-08-10

I'm already "almost" done. All I have to do is iron it. If you cut holes for the shell, but cut the pieces slightly bigger than what they are intended to be, you can trim them down little by little to fit.

Doctor What (author)Doctor What2008-08-10

I did one at the beginning, but it was too small, the pixels were hard to cut out, and I used a black marker for transferring the pattern. It turned out like crap. But for the second one, I blew it up a tad, used similar (but slightly different) colors for each of the different colors, so they were hidden better. For instance, green felt = dark green marker.

bounty1012 (author)2008-04-11

would this work to make a mario or yoshi?

altaria1993 (author)bounty10122008-04-11

why wouldnt it :p

bounty1012 (author)altaria19932008-04-11

mario is smaller pixels but is harder to use because of all of the colors used on him lol OWNED!!!

Doctor What (author)bounty10122008-08-06

He only has three colors...

bounty1012 (author)Doctor What2008-08-06

does he now? well it would be hard to put all the little squares together

Doctor What (author)bounty10122008-08-07

Are you talking about flat mario, or squishy mario? Because I just finished with eight bit mario.

bounty1012 (author)Doctor What2008-08-07

flat i think the one from super mario world 1 on the snes

altaria1993 (author)Doctor What2008-08-07

believe me, mario isnt that hard..

Doctor What (author)altaria19932008-08-07

Yeah, I know, now try bowser, or cutman.

Doctor What (author)Doctor What2008-08-06

8-bit Mario, I mean.

altaria1993 (author)bounty10122008-04-11

the "OWNED!!!" part doesnt make it look really serious.. nad it should be possible, it would just be harder ..

DjProToJeeX (author)altaria19932008-04-13

how is that even a "OWNED" moment. like this guy over here, posts a question to setup an answer so he can say OWNED. if you already know it will be harder why ask the question. heres a good one that doesnt seem that hard

bounty1012 (author)DjProToJeeX2008-04-16

I didnt post it to say owned... I meant the more detailed snes mario from super mario world

DjProToJeeX (author)bounty10122008-04-16


well you did post it to say OWNED!!! hahahhahah

bounty1012 (author)DjProToJeeX2008-04-17


altaria1993 (author)bounty10122008-04-23

you "lol" at yourself failing?

bounty1012 (author)altaria19932008-04-23

i lol at you for that comment sir now good day! YOU EAT PANTS oh god i forgot you cant say pants on the internet

altaria1993 (author)bounty10122008-04-24

pants are hard to be eaten, and they don't taste very well, thats why i do not eat them.

bounty1012 (author)altaria19932008-04-29

how do you know you do not like them if you havent tried them hmmmm can you explain that?????

altaria1993 (author)bounty10122008-04-30

do not eat, which is in the present, not never have eaten, which is diffrent. to be honest i once tried eating them.

bounty1012 (author)altaria19932008-05-04

lol I Tried eating some too it didnt turn out too well i lost my teeth and had to eat a ladybug named paulo lol

DjProToJeeX (author)bounty10122008-04-29

obviously given the context he has eaten them and does know. gawsh

Bitsi (author)bounty10122008-04-11

This technique is def better for large blocky characters. I tried making Frogger with smaller pieces and wasn't happy with the result. Also try to keep the black "outline". It seems to help it look more distinct.

bounty1012 (author)2008-04-17

I made a 1 up mushroom out of this :D im gonna put it on my book bag :D

Bitsi (author)bounty10122008-04-18

Cool. Post a pic. :-)

bounty1012 (author)2008-04-16

you should make it an airfreshener then iron it onto your pants when you fart blame it on the fat kid lolz

Doctor What (author)2008-04-11

Absolutely fabulous! This is an instant favorite. Now I can make my own custom 16 bit videogame character apparel! Yay!

darkmuskrat (author)2008-04-11

This is Scary Awesome!!! Last night I was thinking about giving out some things like this to friends, thx for showing me how. thx again.) P.S. This so matches my pacman sweater

asyrith (author)2008-04-11

Sweet! I totally adore this! Well done! It looks super easy and your instructions were great! I'll have to go check out those cheap shirt at Wal-Mart myself. :D How do they hold up? +1 and favorited, by the way.

Bitsi (author)asyrith2008-04-11

I use the fusible interfacing for all sorts of clothing edits, especially hems. It holds up pretty well, but too much hot water will weaken it. Turn them inside out to wash, and use cold water. Thanks for the 'fav'. Send pics when you try it. :-)

taylor100593 (author)2008-04-11

This is really pretty sweet but only one question do they easly come off

About This Instructable




Bio: I teach computer science and I do graphic design for printed bags, clothing, housewares, and much more. (, and ...
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