Ink Blot T-shirt





Introduction: Ink Blot T-shirt

Make a t-shirt in the style of a Rorschach ink-blot. The resulting design will be essentially random but laterally symmetrical.

Step 1: Materials

You'll need:
- a t-shirt; either white or light-colored
- a piece of corrugated cardboard, roughly the size of your t-shirt
- t-shirt paint; black or other dark color
- thumb tacks or a stapler

Crease the cardboard lengthwise down the center.

The thumb tacks need to be flat. Push pins won't work. Staples might work if you don't have tacks.

Step 2: Setup

Insert the cardboard into the shirt, taking care to keep it centered. Tack down the shirt along the outer edge and near the crease at the top and bottom. Try to keep the shirt straight and pulled tight without stretching it. When you fold it, the shirt should not gap or pull away from the cardboard too much.

Step 3: Apply Paint

Slop some paint on the shirt. A few blotches and splatters should do. Try not to intentionally draw a design.

Step 4: Fold the Shirt

Fold it in half. Close it firmly but don't overdo it. You want it to spread a bit but not to smudge too much. Don't leave it too long. A few seconds is plenty.

Step 5: Open and Let Dry

Open the shirt again and leave it to dry. The paint will probably bleed through to the cardboard and stick. You should be able to peel it off if you're careful.

Step 6: Variations

You can make a multi-colored design by repeating the process, letting each layer dry.

If you use a smaller piece of cardboard, you can create several separate designs on the shirt (front, back, sides).



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100 Discussions


1 year ago

I just love this idea. We live in an area where one can purchase all-you-can-stuff clothing into a plastic bag for anywhere from two to seven dollars. This would be a superb project for an entire classroom, costing very little to the teacher and/or students. Thank you for sharing

Just cover the cardboard in plastic wrap or wax paper and the tee shirt will come off easily

Fun idea. My shirts are still drying, I'll post 'em up later.

I used some binder clips instead of pins/adhesive spray and it turned out just peachy.

I see a bull or some kind of large angry animal. I must do this, because of the simplicity and the large amounts of boring monochromatic shirts I have.

That actually looks like the dog that rorsach killed when he was finding that pedophire murderer!!

I was immediately enthralled by this idea, and ventured forth to replicate it with a female compatriot of mine. The only problem I ran into was that I let the paint sit for too long, and ended up with some cardboard stuck on the inside of the shirt. Other than that, the results were pretty awesome:


I see a spider or a bug but I can totally see the bull

If all you see is a bunch of ink blobs and stray lines. What does it mean? OMG!!! I am brain dead or have no imagination or, BOTH!

i see a guy sitting in the middle with two chicks facing each other drinking from glasses atop the guy's head

I see a happy fish-man coming out of the ocean.. What does that say about me? :P

If you turn it 90* clockwise it looks like a motorcycle riding along side a still pond. Pretty COOL!!!

it looks like a spider

:) I was making this for a 16 y/o boy and bought the "neon green" soft fabric paint by tulip from Michael's . Avoid this color unless you're into glitter. I learned the hard way

Made a few for Christmas presents. Can hardly wait to see how they like them. I'm making one for me next! Thanks for a great project!

HOw well does this hold to washing? would it just depend on what paint you used?