Bonus: I'll show you a really neat way to transfer designs onto fabric without the hassle of stencils. ;)
Step 1: Materials
-- a white tank top (Make sure the fabric is compatible with the fabric marker/paint you use. Check the fine print of your product for details, but cotton is always a safe bet.)
-- a black fabric marker or black fabric paint
-- paintbrush if you're using paint
-- pointy sharpie (any color that's not light; I used a medium point black sharpie.)
-- thin sheet of paper (Printer paper is too thick but binder paper is fine.)
-- magazine, cardboard, or newspaper
-- iron (for those who will use a fabric marker)
The tank top only costed me $2.58 because I had a 40% off coupon for the store, and I already had all the supplies at home so this was a pretty cheap project for me. *fist pump*
Step 2: Transferring the Design
Then place your tank top on a flat work surface and put the magazine, cardboard, or newspaper inside so that when you use your fabric marker or paint, the black won't seep through to the back of the tank top.
Take the thin paper with the design and position it so that the design is in the spot you want it to be on the tank top. It's a good idea to put on the tank top and make a little pencil mark at the bottom of where you want the Aperture logo to be. Once you're happy with the positioning, grab your sharpie and trace the pencil marks of your design. Press down hard enough that the ink goes through, but not too hard that the paper tears. Occasionally check that the sharpie ink gets through the paper and onto the tank top; you may need to go over sections twice. You don't need to make sure that every line is transferred to the tank top because you only need a rough sketch to give you an idea of where to color.
Step 3: Coloring in the Outline
With fabric paint, what I suggest is to use the tip of the handle to outline the letters before using the brush to fill those outlines in. That way, the outline of the letters will be neater and straighter than possible with a brush. Then again, my brush skills are horrendous so maybe that's just me. *sheepish grin*
With fabric marker, I used pointillism (using dots to fill in the design). Trying to rub the marker on the tank top never works so I put dots where I wanted the black to be. Yes, it's time consuming, but do it during a movie (How I Met Your Mother reruns...) and it's not so bad at all. The result will be worth it!
Step 4: Final Touch for the Coloring
Step 5: Ironing
To make your lovely Aperture design permanent, you need to heat set it with an iron. There's also the option of throwing the tank top into the dryer , but check the instructions for your fabric marker before trying that. For the ironing, just run the iron over the back side of the design for a few minutes. Be sure to follow any directions that came with the marker before blindly doing that though (there are some heat requirements and timing instructions).
Step 6: VOILÀ
By the way, that companion cube plush was made using this tutorial: http://jetlogs.org/2007/10/29/companion-cube-plushie-sewing-pattern/