Glow in the Dark Fashion




Introduction: Glow in the Dark Fashion

In this instructable I  will teach you how to sew your own shirt and then make it glow in the dark with a number of fun and fashionable designs !
My original design (the Hawaiian floral shirt) was inspired by some pictures I saw of the glowing fungi which grow in some Australian forests (shown above)
As well as being a fun project these clothes looks fantastic in the night time and you really stand out, a good alternative to unfashionable high visibility biking jackets, and a fun thing to wear to a party.
If you aren't great at sewing don't worry because it's really simple and I will go through every step with plenty of details and pictures. As for the design I have come up with a number of glowing patterns which you can feel free to use but you can really do any pattern you like.
( I have entered this for the fashion and the dream it...wear it contest so if you like my design I would be really grateful for your vote)

-plain fabric for your shirt
-Tulip glow paint (red and orange glow yellow at night and green glows green)
- sequins or any other decorations you may want to add

-sewing machine ( If you don't have one you can stitch it by hand or simply buy a plain shirt)

Step 1: Choosing Your Design

Here are my designs 
Always remember that you will be able to see the pattern in the daytime too so the shirt is not specifically for night usage. In fact the more you wear it in the day the brighter it will be at night.

Once you have a clear idea of what you want your t-shirt to look like when glowing you should draw out ,using pencil ,your basic design so that you have a clear idea of what you are making when you are making it.
I will teach you how to make T-shirts for your glow clothing but if you have any other ideas I suspect it will work just as well.

Step 2: Cutting and Pinning You Fabric

The first step is to draw up a suitable pattern on your fabric,  for a t-shirt use the pattern shown above. I advise cutting out a rough shape and then wrapping it around yourself or if you have one a manikin then marking on a more accurate shape on the cloth so that you get a good fit. 
Cut out these shapes and set out as shown in the pictures.

Next you need to pin together the pieces to get something similar to the pictures above. Ensure the seams of the cloth you have cut are all lined up neatly when you pin them and place the pins about 3 inches away from each other .

Step 3: Sewing It All Together

sewing the shirt:
1)start at the bottom of you shirt and fold about half an inch of cloth up and pin it down. Now slowly sew one side of the bottom of you shirt along this folded line ensuring you are not sewing both faces of the shirt together.Keep sewing until you have gone around the bottom of the whole shirt almost as if it were a circle. You have now sewed a hem around the base of your shirt. (look to first picture for finished product)
2) now sew vertically up the one of the sides of the shirt making sure that you are binding both faces of the shirt together.Stop sewing when you reach the hole for the arm and do the same to the other side.
3) now begin to sew just above the hole for the arms until you reach the hole for the neck then stop and do the same on the other side.
4) Now for the fiddly part, you need to sew your sleeves on. much like when sewing the bottom of you shirt you dont want to sew the two faces together otherwise there will be no hole so you must carefully feed a section of the shirt and a section of the sleeve together into your machine and continue to pull the two pieces of cloth together until you have sewn in a full circle and the sleeves are attached.
5) sew the cuts on the sleeves together and do the same on the other side 
6) If you want to have a neater join around the neck I would advise sewing a hem like the bottom.
7) turn inside out and your done

Step 4: Fashion Designer

You now need to decide on you pattern.
there are a wide variety of different themes you could think about using your shirt for e.g:

alternative to glowing bike coats
Hawaiian floral

Always remember that you will be able to see the pattern in the daytime too so the shirt is not specifically for night usage. In fact the more you wear it in the day the brighter it will be at night.

Once you have a clear idea of what you want your t-shirt to look like when glowing you should draw out ,using pencil ,your basic design.
Next take your paints and slowly squeeze the paint out in an even line, there is a technique to this and I would advise practicing on some rough fabric first:
1)To get swirls you should be extremely careful that you do not break the line other wise it does not have the same smooth effect. 
2)to make stripes you can change the thickness by choosing how many lines of paint you put side by side.
3)If you are just following a pattern like flowers remember that if you go wrong you can always just wipe it off but you need to decide pretty quickly other wise it will leave a stain.

If you want to achieve a section of block color i.e not stripes or lines you can smudge the stripes using either a paint brush or the back of a spoon to get different textures and effects.

Always remember that the thicker you paint the more it will glow so don't thin down your paint too much.

When you have completed you shirt leave the paint to dry for about 4 hours ( I left it over night to be sure).

Paint a pattern on the back ,if you want, after the front has dried.

Also if it gets dirty don't worry because you can wash it in the washing machine as long as you put it inside out.

Step 5: Time to Shine

You now have a completely homemade glow in the dark shirt. I would advise leaving the shirt outside during the day so that at night time it is as bright as possible ( you need to charge up your shirt with light before the night time, but when you have it lasts glowing for quite a few hours).
This can be used for a huge variety of events and celebrations and your sure to be seen.

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    8 years ago

    This is very nice indeed. Do you have any pictures of the shirt in the daytime so we can see it that way too?