White Jersey Fabric - The Perfect Blank Canvas

   When looking through all of the gorgeous fabrics Art Gallery Fabrics sells and putting together my first big order, there was one fabric that definitely stood out from the rest. 

one of these things is not like the other Maker Mountain Fabrics

    Normally I am all about beautiful prints and bright colors, matching be damned!  I want to swoon over and pet the pretty fabrics and sew gorgeous things.

So why?

Why would I order solid white jersey?

    Well, the first reason is, Art Gallery Fabrics jersey is soft, has 4 way stretch and holds up to repeated washing and general clothes mistreatment, better than any other jersey I have sewn with.

    But even more importantly, I ordered it because white is the perfect canvas for almost limitless amounts of messy and creative fun.  Whether you are playing by yourself, with a group of awesome crafty ladies or with your littlest helpers, I promise you are going to have some serious fun. 

Here are my first two super fun projects, that I can definitely highly recommend. 

DIY fabric decorating tutorial

Tie Dye

    We have started this little tradition in our family (or at least, I will make it a tradition whether anyone else likes it or not) of tie dyed "camping shorts" for all of the kids on our big, family camping trip every summer. The first year, my husband also needed (NEEDED) a tie dye shirt to go along with them all, because that is how he rolls.  This year, all of the grown ups got shirts!  The shirts were all basics, they came in a big pack from Target.  And even those were awesome after they were tie dyed. 

   But the shorts on the other hand, were handmade, comfy cozy and awesome from the very start.  For all the kids last year, and the girls this year, I used The Ginger Shorties pattern from Sew Like My Mom. It is free, well written and easy to follow, sized accurately and they turn out super cute and comfortable.  The pattern comes in sizes 12m - 8 and I have now already made them in all of the sizes except 8!  This year, for my nephew, the sole boy in the crew, I made a pair of Mini Hudson Pants by True Bias.

    I have absolutely zero regrets about buying that pattern and I can not wait to make some Mini Hudsons for the girls and some more not mini Hudsons for myself. 

    But back to the tie dye!

All you need to get started is a big pile of white stuff and some mixed up bottles of dye from a kit.

tie dye bottles

A big basket of rubber bands.

rubber bands

And the desire for your hands to look like this.

tie dyed hand

and this!

First do some twisting

tie dye spiral

and some crinkling. 

crinkle tie dye

Tie it up with rubber bands.

Rubber bands

Then do some squirting.

And squirting

And squirting.

Bag everything up for 8-24 hours (obviously I could wait no longer than 8, to the minute, before busting in to my package.  Some kids eat the marshmallow, some kids wait so they can get two.  We all know which kid I am).

Open up the bags, take off the rubber bands.  Rinse THOROUGHLY with cold water.  Lots (and lots) of dye will come out.  Don't worry.  This is normal. 

Admire how cool they look.

Wash them on cold.

Admire how cool they look again.

Wear them so you will look cool!

*** I don't know if my serious love of tie dye is a sign that I was born in the wrong era or that I am actually still an 8 year old, but I don't care.  I love it.  No shame here. 

Fabric Paint Stamping

   I feel a little sad for fabric painting now.  Who could follow up all that.  Shorter and fewer pictures on this one, I promise, but no less messy fun, I promise you that, too!

   This project called for two pairs of Go To Leggings.  There is no pattern I have sewn more than these leggings.  My girls live in these leggings, all sizes, all seasons.  I have also sewn countless pairs to sell over the last 5 years when that was still a thing I did.  I can not recommend a pattern more.  If you have kids and you don't have this pattern, just go buy it now.  Not an affiliate.  Not sponsored in any way.  Just true pattern love. 

   I was also going to make myself my first Lark Tee to decorate, but time got away from me on that one.  Lark tee might get its own post later. 

So all you need for this messy fun, is some white jersey fabric and fabric paint.  I bought this great multi pack from Amazon, because who could commit to just one color.

Then you sew something amazing.

Cut a potato in half and carve out some shapes.  Maybe you have superior stamp making skills.  If you do, I am in total awe.  My big sister makes amazing stamps.  I clearly do not.  But Annie thought they were great!  Thank goodness for preschooler expectations. 

Potato stamps

Choose your colors and get stamping!

Maybe you decide potato stamping is too tricky, so you stamp with your finger for awhile.

Then maybe you remember that you don't actually like getting your hands dirty.  So you move on to a paintbrush.

fabric painting with kids

Whichever method brings happiness to your heart.  Your finished product will be beautiful!

That's all I've got for you today, friends.  I hope you are inspired to sew up some great basics and get to work making one of a kind, messy, colorful amazingness for yourself or the people you love. 

And when you do I hope you share pictures and inspiration with me.  I would love, love to see and hear all about it!


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