The shirt had seen better days, and I thought about mounting it in some fashion for quite some time. I finally took the plunge, and this is what I came up with.
Please keep in mind two points. First, I didn't think of doing this as an instructable, so there could be more photos. Second, I hit project snags, did things I didn't end up liking,etc, so some of this is "how to fix things that you did to yourself." But that's problem solving, which is a worthy thing by itself.
Step 1: Materials
- T-Shirt with cool graphic
- Staple gun
- Something to mount it on. Palace Arts happened to have a 16 x 16 project board
- Plexiglass same size as your mounting surface
- Cabinet screws
- Wood trim to make up the frame edges
- Clear 5 minute epoxy
- Some gooey adhesive. I used E6000
- Sharp knife- boxcutter or utility knife
- Stain and Polyurethane to taste
Step 2: Attach the Fabric
Position your T-Shirt on the project board and staple gun the edges in place. Wrap the corner areas so they can tuck neatly along the edge of the frame. Don't pull the material too tight, but don't leave it too loose either.
Step 3: Drill Through the Plexiglass
I was concerned about cracking the plexi, but it actually went well. I used a flat surface to drill through to prevent chip out of the plexi. Keep the protective film (that should have come with your plexiglass) on. Drill ~slowly~ and with minimal pressure, using a sharp bit that is as big as the threads on the screws you will be using. The drilled plexiglass should start coming out in delicate shavings. Continue with gentle pressure until you have drilled completely through.
Step 4: Screwing the Plexiglass Into Place
Position your plexiglass onto the project board, and take each screw and push it down firmly through each hole. This should slightly spread the fabric,leaving a mark. Raise up the plexiglass, and use a utility knife to make a small cross-shaped tear for the screw to go through.
I did this for one screw, and then screwed it most of the way in so the rest of the holes would line up consistently. With everything oriented, you should be able to screw your plexi down after you remove its protective film. Screw it just snug enough that the plexi is held tightly in place.
Step 5: Finished?
I had some redwood beading about 3/4 inch wide. I used a dremil and utility knife to cut out recesses for the screwheads, and shot it a couple of times with polyurethane. You would be able to see these recesses if you were standing close to it, but this did what I wanted it to do. I glued them on with Devcon five minute epoxy, which worked well. Thank God this stuff is clear, because I accidentally got some on part of the plexiglass that would not be hidden by the frame. There's a learning experience. It wasn't horrible though, and I won't lose any sleep over it.
Step 6: Glue the Fabric Down to the Edges
E6000 is wonderful stuff, but can be a bit stringy, so pay attention to it. They say to goop both surfaces and then pull apart for 2 minutes to improve the bond. This was the clamp up I used. Gluing one side at a time was slow, but it made the lath easy to reposition.
Step 7: Last Details
Step 8: Finished
Thanks for checking this out, and hope you have fun in your own projects.