February 10, 2013
It doesn’t look like brightly colored denim is going away anytime soon, especially for the little ones, and so I bought another pair for Taylor last week when Target had them on sale for $12 each. I originally planned to have her just wear them as is, but was struck by a bit of inspiration over today and decided to add some stenciled hearts to them. They’re great for Valentine’s Day, but of course little girls can get away with wearing hearts on their pants all year long. Here’s the really simple how-to, so you can make some for your little gal, or for yourself! First gather your supplies. You’ll need to cut out a heart stencil out of a thicker type of paper, like a cardboard cereal box. Make sure your stencil is equally square so that you can use it as a guide when placing your hearts. You’ll then need some fabric paint (I prefer Tulip fabric paint for projects like these as opposed to multi-surface paint like the one the Martha Stewart line makes), some sponge brushes and of course your canvas. I found these jeans so great to work with because there was minimal smudging on the fabric and when I made a mistake, it washed off very easily. I have never had good results trying to wash fabric paint off of knit cotton or canvas. A few tips and tricks. You’ll want to make 2 stencils because you’ll notice that after you complete the first leg, the paper will start to break down a bit from the moisture of the paint, and some bleeding and smudging will occur. So cut two stencils so they stay fresh. When you place your stencil on your denim, make sure to hold firmly in place, and then apply paint in a blotting motion as opposed to brushing or filling it in. Then lift the stencil up in one swift clean motion so it doesn’t smudge your heart. Keep a moist rag on hand for mess ups.
As far as a pattern goes, I tend to be a little willy nilly with planning and pattern placement. I like to eyeball, and initially took out my ruler to try and make the hearts all perfectly symmetrical, but that just isn’t my style. Instead I decided to just go for it and started with one heart up top towards the waist, and then, using my stencil as my guide, spaced each heart out from corner to corner of each heart (as shown in image 2), and then staggered them down, always using the stencil as the guide and just going corner to corner. If you notice, there are four rows of hearts just staggered but going straight down the entire length of the pant. It worked out perfectly and I didn’t drive myself crazy. Taylor is pretty much in love with these, and I pretty much want a pair for myself now. Because honestly, the only thing better than faded neon denim, is faded neon denim with hearts painted on them. Am I right, or am I right? Enjoy, and please let me know if you make a pair!