Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Coloring Pages T-Shirt

I picked up a plain orange long sleeved t-shirt at Target the other week.  It was $1.50.  You definitely can not make a t-shirt for $1.50.  I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do with it.

I’m embarrassed to admit, but my son loves Elmo.  Absolutely loves him.  I wanted to give him a shirt that he would enjoy wearing, but that wasn’t too cheesy.

I just noticed this week that when my son colors he is starting to actually color the objects on the page instead of just drawing random marks.

So I decided to make him a shirt with his favorite characters that he could color.  It would show his progress at a point in time.

I googled some coloring book images and printed them out.


He was so very excited to see all the images and got started coloring them right away.


He was calling out all their names and making all the appropriate animal noises as he colored away.


Now the easier way to do this project would have been to transfer the images to the t-shirt first and then have him color the t-shirt.  We are currently working on learning that we only color on paper.  So my plan was to have him color on the pages and then I would transfer his coloring marks onto the shirt.

I’m sure there are other easier ways to do this project.  But this way worked just great for us.  Once he was done coloring I used a black sharpie marker to draw on his t-shirt.

I did a little tracing, but mostly free-handed the characters.


Here is where I paused and had to think about going through with the next step.  But since this was supposed to be a shirt that showed his coloring progress, I looked at his coloring marks and using colored sharpies, transferred the scribbles.


He was very excited to put Elmo on. 

Here was the final product on a very unreliable model.  Even when tempted with food he didn’t really want to cooperate for pictures.


And there you have it, the scribblings of a 20 month old on his current favorite items!


In case you couldn’t see the favorite items are:  truck, train, Elmo, horse, monkey, Mator, and cow.


  1. how fun... I'm sure he loved to wear it! I've got a 20 (almost 21) months too and she's also "drawing" a lot!!! Gotta try giving her a colouring book.

    1. I think your daughter would love this project...even if you only get around to printing out the personalized "favorite items" coloring pages. My son was absolutely thrilled to be coloring and of course now wearing his favorite items!

  2. What a great idea and skillful execution! That T-shirt is a keeper for the future, an artwork by mother and son together. Maybe You can frame it or something;)

  3. That's a fun idea =) I hope you'll link it up to Make It Wear It at!

    1. I actually posted another shirt I made this week to Make It and Wear I will have to link up this project next week.

  4. I don't know which I like more---this shirt your the photo of your little guy coloring. (He looks so happy! It seriously is a photo of what I feel like when I color! What an adorable face.)
    This is a great project. I love it.