I thought I'd give it a try at making a Wolverine themed t-shirt using Techshop's Vinyl cutter.
Step 1: Import Sketch
Did a quick sketch of Wolverine then imported it into Illustrator.
Step 2: Sketch to Vector
Used the sketch as a template to create a vector version.
Step 3: Load Vector File
Saved my vector image as an eps to import into the vinyl cutter software making sure you account for a bit of space from the edge of the material and that your image is scaled to the intentional dimensions.
Step 4: Cut Vinyl
This part can be tricky. The position of the cutter blade and settings will determine how well of a cut you get. Test cuts are recommended. The settings I used here were - Speed 4 inches, Force 100g.
Step 5: Pick Tee
Picked an appropriate tee from my vast selection of super interesting colors.. I bought these shirts in bulk online and the colors were randomly selected and shipped. I decided to use some Rit color fading action and sunlight to help fade and tone down the colors a bit.
Step 6: Ink Barrier
I used a paper bag inside the tee as a barrier so the ink wouldn't soak through to the back. I also have a drop-cloth down underneath my project area.
Step 7: Place Sticker
Placed my Wolvie sticker on my color appropriate tee.
Step 8: Peel Transfer
I then peeled the transfer paper from the vinyl. You may have to hold down parts of the vinyl decal from lifting or shifting out of place while removing the transfer paper.
Step 9: Template
After the transfer paper was peeled, I re-pressed the sticker to better adhere to the tee material.
Step 10: Mask Off
After I was confident the decal seemed fairly secure, I folded the loose areas of the tee and used a painters hand masker to mask off the surrounding areas of the decal.
Step 11: Ready Ink
I decided to go with a sprayable fabric ink I picked up from Michaels for a few bucks for this project since I had a bit of prior experience with creating templates and decals for various signage in the past. I thought I'd stick to something familiar for my first attempt.
Step 12: Apply Ink
Quick tip: Past experience with something may not equal stellar results this time around.
I over-sprayed the heck out of the ink and drenched my tee. The ink is very thin and runs so use light passes.
Step 13: De-mask
Quick tip #2: Patience.
I impatiently decided to de-mask and remove the vinyl template before the ink was fully dry thinking to minimize the bleed. However, in doing this I made a few smudges from handling the masking paper while the ink was still wet. There was a fair amount of bleed due to over saturating the template, porousness of the tee material, and the vinyl adhesive not being a tight enough barrier. I suspect that light passes of the spray ink during the application process may have helped reduce the bleed a bit.
Step 14: Tada!
I did let the ink dry with the barrier still in place over night before use. Bleed and all, I am happy with the over all look and plan to make more elaborate designs in the future. After a little of wear and tear, this will be one cool cozy Wolvie tee that I made at Techshop!!! http://techshop.ws/