Personalized T-Shirts for Kids

Whether your kids want to throw a football or a tea party, one of these t-shirt designs will suit their style.

Button Trim Shirt

A strip of patterned red ribbon, stitched in place, is a lively accent to the neckline of this classic apron tank top.

How to Make It
-- Sew flower-shape and round buttons along the ribbon for more adornment.
-- Below the ribbon, glue on several felt flowers.
-- Sew an X or add a button in each flower center using bright embroidery floss.

Kitty T-Shirt

Your youngster will be the most stylin' kid on the block when you add a jazzed-up kitten to her shirt.

How to Make It
-- Create a cute iron-on from an online image by printing the image on iron-on transfer paper.
-- Stitch mismatched buttons directly to the shirt for kooky eyes.
-- To add a fun saying, use fusible-web tape to attach ribbons and rickrack in the shape of letters.

Big Hit Shirt

Comfortable enough for the home team, a polo shirt scores fun style.

How to Make It
-- Dress up the placket with felt flowers with button centers.
-- Decorate the bottom of the shirt with a random floral arrangement.
-- Sew every flower in place.

Vacation Memories T-Shirt

Skip the standard souvenir garb with this T-shirt.

How to Make It
-- Scan a vacation photo and print it on iron-on transfer paper.
-- Trim the transfer paper and iron the images onto a white or light-color shirt.
-- Use washable fabric glue to affix crafts-store rhinestones that spell out where you went.

Felt Flowers T-Shirt

Put a fresh face on a basic cotton T-shirt with springy accents.

How to Make It
-- Cover the front with a burst of felt flowers and buttons.
-- Include a few simple circles for variety.
-- Sew each piece in place with an X shape.

Pom-Pom Fringe T-Shirt

Stay cheery even on dreary days with this bright yellow T-shirt.

How to Make It
-- Have your child arrange the trim however she likes.
-- Use fabric glue to set the design.
-- Add a zigzag stitch holds the trim permanently.

Simple to Chic T-Shirt

Your daughter can change this shirt's ribbon as often as she changes the bow in her hair.

How to Make It
-- Using a sewing machine, stitch buttonholes on the sleeves.
-- Snip them open, and weave ribbon through the openings.
-- You can also opt for the no-sew version of this shirt like the one pictured.

Swirls of Joy T-Shirt

Let your kids create a one-of-a-kind design, then help them iron the design onto the shirt.

How to Make It
-- Cut the felt circles.
-- Iron the felt to fusible webbing.
-- Use a quick stitch to secure the designs.

Touch of Elegance T-Shirt

Pure white T-shirts gain a classic touch with the addition of crocheted embellishments available at fabric stores (look in the trim or applique section).

How to Make It
-- Add ring of white doilies around the collar (see shirt on the left).
-- Add has crocheted trim at the sleeves and bottom edge (see shirt on the right).
-- Attach the trim with washable fabric glue or machine stitching.

Ribbon-Embellished T-Shirt

Woven ribbon, such as this red gingham with floral embroidery, is a sophisticated decoration for this pale blue T-shirt.

How to Make It
--Pick a ribbon you love.
-- Use fabric glue or a simple stitch to secure it to the shirt.

Pretty Bordered T-Shirt

As you put a pretty border on a basic T-shirt, teach kids a few sewing basics such as allowing for seams and ironing fabric.

How to Make It
-- Cut off about 4 inches from the bottom of the shirt.
-- Cut two 9-inch-wide strips of the patterned fabric (the lengths will depend on the shirt's width, not its circumference.)
-- Fold both strips in half lengthwise, and press with an iron.
-- Pin one strip to the shirt hem in front and the other to the shirt hem in back; machine or hand-stitch to attach.
-- For a finishing touch, sew a pair of decorative buttons to the front and back fabric strips.

Fun Floral T-Shirt

These floral-fabric blooms with button centers are surprisingly simple to make. The flowers are appliques fused and satin-stitched in place.

How to Make It
-- Iron fusible webbing to the floral fabric following the package instructions.
-- Let your kiddos cut out flower shapes, and then press with an iron to fuse the flowers to the shirt.
-- To hide the fabric's raw edges and define the appliques even more, satin-stitch around the edges.
-- Sew a fancy button to each flower center.

Ruffly T-Shirt

Ruffles give a girly look to this plain purple T-shirt.

How to Make It
-- Simply sew or glue three rows of coordinating or contrasting ruffled trim to the sleeves.
-- The same idea could be used to decorate around a collar or across the bottom edge of a shirt.

Grommet Galore T-Shirt

A row of 3/4-inch metal grommets marches across this bold orange T-shirt. (For girls, place grommets along the shirt's hem or neckline.)

How to Make It
-- Grommets are available in many sizes at fabric stores.
-- Attach them with a grommet tool.

Easy-Care Advice

Plain T-shirts, whether all-cotton or a 50/50 cotton/polyester blend, are easy to care for. But adding trim can complicate things. Most ribbons, rickrack, crocheted embellishments, and yarns are machine-washable, but decorated shirts should be turned inside out before washing to minimize wear and tear on the trims. Some trims, such as beaded fringe or ribbons containing beads or plastic parts, are not safe for the washer. Hand-wash and line-dry shirts with these decorations to preserve your creations.

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