Introduction: Comet Image Using a Magnet, Fine Metal Particles and Glow in the Dark Paint

About: I enjoy everything

A comet is a solar system body with a visible atmosphere or coma, and a tail.

I wanted to create a glowing comet image on a t-shirt with a unique physical coating technique.

Since comets are known for small rocky and metallic particles, I included fine metal particles inside the coating.

To take it a little further instead of a brush, I decided to use a magnet to manipulate the coating onto the surface of the t-shirt.

Well to go even farther; I used glow in the dark paint that is visible under a black light.

I like to think that I captured the idea of a comet on the t-shirt.

Step 1: Gather the Materials

Black T-shirt

14 inches outer diameter by ¾ deep closeable hoop (aka Wooden Embroidery Hoop)

75-watt black light bulb.

Glow in the dark natural fabric paint

Magnetic picture game - Wooly Willy is a toy in which metal filings moved about with a magnetic wand on a cartoon face

Rare earth magnet wrapped in easy removal tape. I did not want any chance of the magnetic dust to get to the magnet. I thought that it would be near impossible to remove. So, I also used a piece of plastic from a recycled butter tub.

I used a Popsicle stick to stir the metal into the paint.

White poster board and a cheap brush was used to lay down the comet design

Hair dryer to speed up the process.

Step 2: Put the Shirt on the Hoops

Using the 14 inches outer diameter by ¾ deep closeable hoops (aka Wooden Embroidery Hoop) put the clamp portion inside the shirt.

The other hoop is pressed from the top of the shirt.

I did the hoops in the opposite or reversed clamping direction of traditional usage. I wanted the surface that was going to receive the coating not to touch coating pattern. The one picture shows some paint inside the hoop to illustrate the reverse offset.

Center hoops on the shirt and tighten the hoop clamp.

Step 3: Draw on the Poster Board and Tape Up Magnet to Plastic

Put the hooped shirt on the poster board and use a marker to indicate the general area the design is going. This will give you an idea on what will fit in the hooped area?

I did not want any chance of the magnetic dust to get to the magnet. I thought that it would be near impossible to remove. I used a piece of plastic from a recycled butter tub and tape to form the protective surface.

Please note do not get your magnet near your camera. During this adventure, the magnet was on a smooth surface and actually slid across and attached to my camera. It was like a horror movie. I could not believe my eyes and before I knew it, the two were stuck.  I lost one picture due to the magnet.

Step 4: Create Coating - Metal Powder Particles Mixed With Glow in the Dark Paint

I cut open the Magnetic picture game - Wooly Willy  with household scissors, to remove the metal filings (I used three games for the metal mixed).  Then I used three squirts of glow in the dark fabric paint. 

I used a Popsicle stick to stir the metal into the paint.

Step 5: Brush Coating Onto Poster Board for Design

This is a reverse image technique, so if you are laying down your design; remember it will be reversed on your t-shirt.

I used a cheap brush to create the comet image.

Step 6: Pull the Coating Image Onto the Shirt

I flipped the hooped t-shirt over the wet image on the poster board; Watching to stay in my marks.

There is an air gap between the t-shirt and the design.

With the rare earth magnet, I pull the coating up onto the shirt. I did a light padding process-You can hear the metal hitting.

I worked or padded the magnet around the inside of the hoop area.

I went over the inside areat three times.

Step 7: Pull Excess Coating Off the T-shirt

I flipped the hoop over and removed the excess coating.
Mostly the metal came off and the paint stayed on the fabric.

I achieved what I was going for, a lightly spotted image.

Step 8: Speeding Up the Drying Process

I used a hair dryer to speed up the drying process. I am not one to wait and it took just a few minutes to dry.

The paint bottle stated to wait 72 hours prior to washing. You will need to read and learn your paint you use for the best results.

Step 9: Finished Comet Design - Glow in Dark Paint - Fine Metal and a Magnet

Here is another picture of my Finished Comet design using glow in the dark paint, fine metal particles and a magnet.

Step 10: Using Black Light

I purchased a 75-watt black light bulb, to see the affects of the paint.

It is pretty cool how it turned out. It comes across as a ghostly image on the shirt (on the left of the photo).

I could not be any happier with the results. Not all of my never done before projects turn out; I am glad I did this project.

Print & Dye Contest

Participated in the
Print & Dye Contest