I am in love with my t-shirt from The Frat Collection. I wear it basically every chance I get. (That is to say, the first day it’s out of the wash I’m wearing it…) I’m really not a t-shirt kind of person, which is why I think I like it so much. When I’m running errands or babysitting a bunch of crazy kids, it’s the perfect thing to throw on and feel (at least a little bit) put together while still maintaining the comfort of a plain t-shirt.
I was inspired by The Frat Collection and monogrammed embroidered t-shirts I saw on Etsy (like these) to create my own. Considering that I do not have an embroidery machine, although I would love one, I had to improvise a way to make my own version. Here’s what I came up with!
I have quite a large collection of Lilly fabric from past projects. I really wanted to make a Lilly pocket. And I found a scrap of polka dot fabric in the Ladies Lounge that made the perfect monogram!
Want to make your own? This is surprisingly an easier project than it looks! All it takes is a little patience and elbow grease. Here is what you will need:
Iron On Adhesive | I used “Heat n Bond” Ultra Hold
Pocket T-Shirt | I used a Fruit of the Loom Pocket Tee
Patterned Fabric | I used leftover Lilly fabric, which was cut from old dresses
Iron | Make sure you turn your steam setting off if applicable
Cardstock, Sharpie, & Scissors | This is used to make templates!
Solid Fabric | To complement your patterned fabric
I’m going to do my best to explain how I made the fabric appliques for the pocket and monogram… but in case I don’t make sense (which is highly likely) I suggest watching this video! She does a great job of explaining how it works… and it’s good to see someone do it. This is the video I used to learn how to use the iron on adhesive.
I drew my monogram on a piece of cardstock with a Sharpie. Based on the size of the pocket, I grabbed a mini glass that had a good sized circle. Then, using a ruler, I drew the monogram (first in pencil). I looked off a monogram I had in my room to make the letters look okay. Circle monograms are pretty easy to draw if you trace the circle first! The letters really go right with the edge of the circle, so it’s easy to start with the outside letters and then work on the middle!
I also made a template of the pocket shape using the same technique.
I cut out the most of the monogram and the pocket with scissors. But I had to use an exacto knife to cut out the inside of the A.
Trace the reverse of the templates on the smooth side of the transfer paper. (The bumpy side is the glue, which will eventually melt with the help of your iron!!!) Cut down the fabric to a good size and trim down the paper. Don’t actually cut the tracing out yet– leave the edge so the glue for sure gets to the edge of your almost-applique!
Here’s how to iron: Place the fabric good-side down on the ironing board. Place the adhesive on the fabric. Ensure that your fabric square is LARGER than the adhesive… otherwise you will end up with a big glue-y mess and a ruined iron!
Complete this for every part. In this case, you’ll need to do this for the pocket fabric and the monogram.
Carefully cut out the monograms. Because you traced on the paper part of the adhesive earlier, it’s super easy to cut the pieces out.
Peel the paper off after they’ve been cut.
The back of the fabric will now be super shiny! This is the side that gets ironed onto the t-shirt!
Start by ironing on the pocket fabric first. Press super hard and move the iron slowly, continuously pressing firmly!!! It takes a little bit for the pocket to set, but it will… just be patient.
Let the fabric cool.
Start by aligning your middle letter. Iron on using the same process as before. One letter at a time, complete the process for your first and middle initial.
Here’s a close up of the other pocket I did! I made it for a white t-shirt. Pink seersucker fabric and a Lilly Pulitzer monogram!
You should be able to leave the fabric as is after the iron on process. However, I enlisted the help of Soccer Mom to sew the edges of the pocket fabric down for extra reinforcement.
PS Here are other projects I’ve (or Soccer Mom has) completed using Lilly fabric:
My mom also made a Lilly stocking, but apparently I’ve never blogged about that!