DIY Halloween T-Shirts – Easy & Cheap

DIY Halloween T-Shirts – Easy & Cheap

It’s Fall!  That means Halloween is coming soon.  I think Halloween is my favorite holiday after Christmas.  I’ve always loved the costumes and decorations for Halloween.  It’s such a fun holiday for kids and adults.  I loved taking my kids trick or treating; these days I go with them to take the grandkids!  And when we’re not trick or treating I enjoy handing out candy from my witch’s caldron I keep on a table at the top of my driveway.  Of course we deck out the driveway with ghoulish props; we even set up a fog machine that spews fog all the way up the long driveway.  The neighborhood kids love it!

But in our family Halloween isn’t just celebrated on the last day of October.  We celebrate it all month long!  We start decorating at the end of September, play the neighborhood game “You’ve Been Booed”, make Halloween related crafts, go to a haunted house or two, throw a Halloween Party, and dress the kids in Halloween T-Shirts in the week leading up to Halloween.  Yes, it’s a month long celebration of spooky fun things!

This year I re-discovered the ease of iron-on transfers for DIY T-Shirts.  It was perfect timing.  Now that I’ve made Birthday Shirts for Jett and the twins, they have September birthdays, it’s time to turn my attention to Halloween. Since iron-on transfers are my current obsession why not combine it with my Halloween crafts.  So I’ve been busy designing and ironing on all sorts of ghouls, monsters, and Halloween stuff to just about everything I can think of.

One of my favorite projects are these Halloween T-Shirts.  They’re fun, easy, and very inexpensive to make.  Sure beats paying top dollar for Halloween T-Shirts the kids will only wear for a day or two.  In fact they’re cheap enough to make several Halloween T-Shirts for each kid, so he or she will have one to wear everyday leading up to October 31.

(This post has affiliate links to help you find the products I used.  Should you choose to make a purchase from the links, we get a small commission.  It helps keep this site going!  Thanks!)

halloween t-shirtsI’d considered making appliques tees, but decided against it.  I didn’t want to invest too much time making shirts that they’d only wear for a day or so; they’re sure to have outgrown them by the time Halloween rolls around next year.  That’s why iron-on transfer are perfect for this project!

You iron on anything you want on the t-shirts.  I made the Halloween Hello Kitty, and the witches’ feet for Harper, and the monster and jack-o-lantern for her twin brother, Sadi, and cousin Jett.

I even added their names to make their Halloween T-Shirts extra special. That’s what I love most about DIY T-Shirts, you can personalize them for free!  The letters fit on the same transfer sheet as the image, no waste!

Here’s what you’ll need to make Halloween T-Shirts for the children in your life.  They’ll love them!

Supplies:

T-shirt – They don’t have to be the best quality, remember they’ll only be used a few times.  I found the colored shirts on clearance at Walmart this summer.  They cost $2 each.  The white ones are actually Hanes undershirts, you can pick up a pack of 5 for less than $10 depending on the size.  In a pinch you can use any unprinted shirts you have at home.

Iron On Transfer Paper – There are several brands to choose from.  I use Avery Iron On Transfers; they’re available for dark and light colored material. When choosing which transfer paper to buy consider the color of the t-shirt.  For white and very light colors use the transfer sheets for light colored material; for dark colors use the dark colored transfer sheets.  Read my article on how to use iron on transfers for more details.  For my projects I used both types of transfer sheets.

Computer –  You can design your Halloween T-Shirt on the online software of the company who makes the transfer sheets or you can upload images from from phone or online photo sharing sites. Be respectful of copyrights, not all images on the internet are free.  You can find many images from sites like stockphoto.com, some are free others are not.  If you’re looking for some cool fonts check out dafont.com, they have lots of free fonts you can download and install on to your computer.

Printer – Once you’ve designed your shirt you’ll have to print it on the transfer paper.  Read my how to article for printing tips.

Scissors or craft knife

Iron – be sure it’s not on the steam setting

Hard Surface – NOT and ironing board.  I iron on my counter which I cover with a fabric remnant used only for this purpose.

Parchment Paper – most transfer paper comes with sheets of parchment paper for ironing on the transfer.  If yours doesn’t the parchment paper you have in the kitchen works just as well.

Directions:

Wash and dry t-shirt before you begin.  DO NOT use fabric softener.

Iron wrinkles out of the shirt and let cool completely before placing transfers on them.

Halloween T-shirtsDesign and print your transfer

Cut out images and letters they way you want to.  I used my Cricut Explore Air to design and cut my transfers, but if you don’t have an electric die cut machine you can use scissors or a craft knife to cut and trim your transfers.

Halloween t-shirts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re using dark color transfer sheets peel off the paper backing.

If you’re using light color transfer sheets DO NOT peel off  paper backing.

 

halloween t-shirtsPosition transfer on the cooled t-shirt.

For this shirt I used dark color transfer sheets so I peeled off the paper backing before I positioned it on the shirt.

It’s important the shirt is cool, otherwise the transfer will start to stick on and you won’t be able to re-position it without making a big mess!

I positioned the image and the letters on the shirt before I started ironing.

When I had everything placed the way I wanted I carefully placed a sheet of parchment paper on the entire transfer.  Be careful when you place the parchment paper on, make sure the edges of the transfer are flat on the t-shirt.  Otherwise the transfer will be wrinkled or its edges curled up after ironing.

halloween t-shirtsOnce you’ve done all that follow the manufacturer’s instructions; iron setting/temperature and time you need to press the iron on the transfer.

Be sure the iron is heated to the required temperature before you begin.

Starting on one end of the transfer press the iron firmly down on the shirt for the required time.  Do not more the iron around.  Apply as much pressure on the iron as you can to be sure that the heat goes thru the transfer.

Repeat this process until you’ve ironed the entire transfer.

Let the shirt cool completely before carefully peeling off the parchment paper (dark color transfers) or the paper backing (light color transfers).

If the transfer edges lift off the shirt replace the parchment paper or the paper backing and iron again.  NEVER place iron directly on the transfer.  You’ll  end up with a shriveled up mess.  Trust me on this!

When you’ve peeled off the parchment paper or backing you’re Halloween T-Shirt is ready to wear!

Halloween t-shirts

Have fun creating Halloween T-Shirts for your friends and family this year!  They make awesome favors for your Halloween party!

I’d love to see the designs you come up with.  Please share them with us!


DIY Baby Super Hero Costume

DIY Baby Super Hero Costume

I saw this baby super hero costume on Pinterest and just had to have it for my newborn grandson, until I saw the price.  It’s available by special order on etsy.com for at whopping cost of $46.  In my opinion it was too costly for a photo prop that he would really use only once, twice if it still fits on Halloween.

I was determined to find a way to make this costume for fraction of the cost.  But I didn’t want to haul out my sewing machine for such a tiny project so I went searching for a way to make it without a sewing machine.

I found a handy product by Ditz called Stitch Witchery, a fusible tape that attaches materials together.  It costs less than $2 at the Walmart craft department.  It’s a Godsend!

I “googled” cape and mask patterns and found many.  I made my own paper pattern by drawing a picture I found for the cape.  I printed out the mask pattern from ambrosiagirl.com.
The mask pattern can be adjusted to different sizes when you print it by selecting the image size you need.  I crocheted the diaper cover from a free pattern I found on The Bradens blog.

With a bit of ingenuity and about 2 hours of work I made this reversible mask & cape, and crocheted diaper cover set for I estimate under $5.  The materials I purchased for a grand total of $10 will make a cape and mask for my 1 year old grandson as well.

You can use any color material and make your own design for the applique.  You can even use scraps you have on hand so it won’t cost anything.   I used left over yarn for the diaper cover.

Here’s what you need to make this costume for your kids.  The instructions are for newborn.  You will have to adjust them for larger sizes.

Materials:

1/4 yd. each of Red Satin and Yellow Satin (or colors of your choice)
1/4 yd. Pellam Fusible Interfacing
1 roll of 5/8″ Coordinating Satin Ribbon
1 roll Super Weight Stitch Witchery by Ditz

Yarn
Button
Iron

Directions for Cape:

1.  Make your paper pattern and cut it out. You can also make your “applique” pattern.

2.  Pin pattern on to material and cut one of each color.  Cut out your “applique”

3.  Place wrong sides of cape together and slip the Stitch Witchery tape along the edges.  Iron on according to package directions.

4.  Iron on your applique to one side of the cape.

5.  Cut lengths of Stitch Witchery tape to fit half of the neckline to the edge of it.  Cut out length of ribbon for one side of tie.  Do the same for the other side.  Attach ribbon one side at a time making sure they overlap at the center of the neckline.

Your cape is done!

Directions for Mask:

1.  Print out the pattern and cut out the one you want.

2.  Cut rectangles that will fit the mask pattern.  1 of each color material and 2 interfacing.

3.  Attach interfacing to the wrong side of each piece of material according to directions on the interfacing.  Your rectangles will bit a bit stiffer.

4.  Pin mask pattern on to both material rectangles.  Cut out pattern.  You will have 2 masks.

5.  Place 3 strips of Stitch Witchery tape on the interfacing side of one of the masks.

6.  Place the interfacing side of the other mask on top of the Stitch Witchery tape.  Iron together according to package directions.

7.  Make small slits on either side of the mask.  Attach ribbon or elastic cord to each side.  Make sure cord/ribbon will go around your baby’s head comfortably.

Your Mask is done!

 

Images by Carmina Ahmed    

Use yarn to crochet the diaper cover in a coordinating color.  Sew the button on the finished cover.
For the Braden’s free Diaper Cover Pattern click here!

This set will make a cute photo prop for newborn pictures as well as a great Halloween costume.  Make it in any size you want, you can skip the diaper cover for older children.

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DIY Toddler Costume – Chick Magnet

DIY Toddler Costume – Chick Magnet

Toddler costume

Halloween is next month and my youngest daughter is again looking for the “winner” costume.  She has been trying to win a costume contest for years. 

When she was single she dressed our poor Doberman, Portia, in all sorts of doggy costumes from Wonder Woman to a Roman Chariot paired with my grandson, her nephew, in a Roman Gladiator outfit. 

A few years ago  she dressed my 1 month old grandson in 2 different costumes, a lion bunting and a skeleton.  Alas all her creative efforts have not garnered any costume prizes.  She decided it was time for a DIY Toddler Costume !

A couple of years ago in pursuit of that much coveted prize she sent me images of creative costumes for her now toddler son asking which of them I wanted to make for him.  After much discussion we decided on a chick costume which would be paired with a magnet attached to his stroller thus making him a “chick magnate”.  She had found a feathered chick costume online for $89+, way too much in our opinion.  We agreed to DIY a chick costume.  My contribution would be the chick costume, she and her husband would deck out the stroller.

We ruled out feathered costumes basically due to my grandson’s allergies, not to mention the mess my cat would make while I was working on the costume.  In the end we decided I would try making it out of felt.

I used materials  purchased at Walmart and ended up with this really cute costume.  It took me about 6 hours to make, I think I could have cut the time considerably had I been able to find a hoodie and eliminated the need to crochet the chick hat, but we think the crocheted hat makes the costume much cuter and he can wear the hat even after Halloween.  In the end the whole costume cost less than $20.

Cost Breakdown:

Sweat shirt:                           $ 3.88
Sweat pants:                            3.88
1 yard yellow felt:                   4.98
1 orange felt square:                 .26
1 dk. orange felt square:           .26
1 lt. blue felt square:                 .26
1 dk. blue felt square:               .26
1 white felt square:                   .26
Glue Sticks:                            4.98

Total:                                  $19.02 + tax

Toddler Costume

The directions are for size 12 months.  You will need to alter it for smaller or larger costumes.

Chick Costume Body:

Materials:
1 brown sweat shirt 12 months
1 brown sweat pants 12 months
1 yard yellow felt (you will have some left over)
1 orange felt square
1 dark orange felt square
1 light blue felt square
1 dark blue felt square
Glue Gun and glue sticks

Make a template for the “feathers” using any cardboard.  It should be 3″ long and 2 1/2″ wide.  The bottem needs to curve.  Use the template to cut out 200 pieces of felt – you won’t use it all but you need the extra for mistakes.

Toddler Costume

Cut out 200 felt “feathers”

Starting at the bottom edge of the sweat shirt glue a felt feather just above the band making sure the felt hangs past the shirt bottom but is not glued to the band itself.  Glue the straight edge, the sides and 1/2″ from the curved part.

Toddler costume

Glue top straight edge, sides, and 1/2″ above curve

Continue attaching felt in layers making sure the felt is staggered so that the seams do not line up.  Work in rows in rounds from back to front.  Glue one felt piece at the seams folding it to attache to both front and back.  Top rows need to overlap about half way down the rows below them.  Continue until you reach the neckline. You will have to trim felt pieces to follow the curve of the armholes, attache as close to the seam as possible but do not glue over the seam.  At the neckline you will have to trim the straight part of the felt to follow the curve on the neck band.  Glue those pieces just below the band (you will need that band to stretch so the child can slip it over his head).  End layers at the shoulders.  You will have a seam at the shoulders, leave it for now.

Toddler costume

Overlap and stagger the felt pieces to make them look like “Feathers”

Once you’ve finished the body do the same to both sleeves.  Start just above the wrist bands and work in layers around each sleeve.  You will have to trim pieces around the arm seams.  Attach felt as close to the seam as possible without attaching to the seam.

Toddler costume

Attach felt pieces as close as possible to arm hole seams, but not over the seam.  Do not attach felt to neck band.

Attach felt to cover each shoulder seam.  These pieces should cover the shoulder seam and hang just a bit over the arms.

Cut 6 pieces of  3″ long triangles out of the light orange felt. Attach triangles to the neck band.  3 in front, 3 in back.

Cut out a tie from the dark blue felt.  The size is up to you ( mine was long because I had to cover the print on the sweatshirt that showed thru the felt.)
Attach tie to front of costume under the middle orange triangle.
Decorate the tie with dots or strips of light blue felt glued on.

Attach felt pieces to the sweatpants.  Start at the crotch.  Work layers in rounds around each pant leg.  Attach the same as the shirt up to the elastic waist.

Toddler costume

Photo by Savvy Nana

Your chick suit is done, now on to the chick hat.

Toddler Costume

Chick Magnet

Chick Hat:
To make the chick hat I used the free pattern I found on Crochet Addict.  http://www.crochetaddictuk.com/2014/02/free-crochet-pattern-chick-earflap-hat.html

The instructions are easy to follow and have different sizes.  The instructions include crochet eyes and beak.  I did not make those opting instead to glue on felt pieces.

Toddler costume

Chick Hat

Make the hat as directed on Crochet Addict, you can use the crochet eyes and beak or use felt.  If using felt cut 2 white felt circles, 2 dark blue felt diamonds.  Glue diamonds to middle of white circles.  Glue eyes to hat.  Cut 1 dark orange triangle, glue to hat below eyes.

Toddler costume

Chick Hat

Chick Feet:

Cut 2 “feet” from the dark orange felt.  Cut 2 small slits to either side of top of each foot.  Chain 12 and attach to foot thru the slit.  Do this 3 more times to the remaining slits.  Chain lengths will tie around child’s ankles to cover his shoes.

Toddler costume

Chick Feet

Toddler costume

Chick Magnet

Add a magnet made of styrofoam and foil.

Your costume is done!  Have a safe and happy Halloween!

Check out my Etsy shop for fun handmade hats and more!

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Savvy Nana

DIY Trick or Treat Bags – Free Pattern

DIY Trick or Treat Bags – Free Pattern

Every trick or treater needs a cute bag for his anticipated haul of candies.  Sure you can go buy a plastic pumpkin or Halloween printed bag from the dollar or discount stores, but if you want something special you can make your own.  There’s nothing easier than making these DIY Trick or Treat Bags.  You can make them to coordinate with your child’s costumes too!

diy trick or treat bagsI used Halloween panels I bought at our local fabric store to make these bags.

This is pretty straight forward.  Just cut the panels out, you’ll need 2 for each bag, front and back.

Stitch the panels together on 3 sides, leave the top for the opening.  You can use borders trimmed from the panels for the handles.  Sew strips of them for the handles.  Hem the top before you add the handles.

 

diy trick or treat bagsIf you want to get a bit fancy you can make these bags reversible by adding a lining of contrasting Halloween fabric.

For these I added some cotton batting between the panel and the lining.

These bags require more time, after making these I decided it really wasn’t worth the extra effort.[spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

DIy trick or treat bagsI made these Pokeball bags to match the Pikachu and Jiggly Puff costumes I made for my grandkids.  After all Pokemon critters deserve pokeballs!

These DIY Trick or Treat Bags don’t require sewing skills at all.  You can glue the circles together or fuse them together with strips of  Stitch Witchery fusible webbing. (affiliate link).  I used Steam-A-Seam 2 fusible webbing to attach the appliques on the front of the bag.  Then I tacked on the handles to the top.

To make these DIY Trick or Treat Bags you’ll need:

1/2 yard fabric in black – I used a vinyl material

1/4 yard red fabric

1/4 yard white fabric

Template – click here for the free template

diy trick or treat bags

How To:

Download the template and save to your desktop

Upload template to a photo app and adjust size you need

Print template and cut out pieces

Trace 2 of the black circle and 2 black strips on to your black material

Trace red half circle on to red fabric and fusible webbing

Trace white half circle and small circle on to white fabric and fusible webbing

Cut out the pieces

Stitch or fuse both sides of black circles, wrong sides, together leaving top opening

Tack or stitch on strips to the opening on each side – front and back

Following instructions on fusible webbing iron it on to the white and red pieces

Arrange white and red pieces on top of the black bag using the picture above for placement

Iron on following instructions on the webbing package

Voilá!  Pokeball bag ready!  Your kids will love them!

Kids’ Halloween Party Ideas

Kids’ Halloween Party Ideas

kids' halloween partyI’m sure I’ve mentioned that our family loves parties, we celebrate just about every holiday with a party.  But no party beats a Kids’ Halloween Party, they’re my favorite!

Kids’ Halloween Parties have all the elements of fun, costumes, decorations, treats, games, and activities.  I’ve been organizing and hosting these parties since my kids were small, now we have them for the grands.

Here are some fun ideas to help you fun a spooktacular Kids’ Halloween Party this year!

Kids halloween partySpooky Halloween punch is always a hit at our parties. Watch the kids oohs and aahs when you serve up your punch.  It doesn’t matter what kind of punch, we use blue Hawaiian Punch, it’s the presentation that counts!

Be careful when you handle dry ice, it’s what makes this awesome theatrical effect.  Watch this video to learn how to make this cool punch!

kids halloween partyIf you haven’t decorated already you must for your party.  You don’t have to get too elaborate and turn your whole house into a haunted house, but that’s fun if you can!

I love to use my fog machine it creates the perfect atmosphere!

 

 

kids halloween partyOnce you have your decorations planned it’s time to set the menu.  This would depend on the time of day your Kids’ Halloween Party will be.  I like to start in the early evening and end soon after it gets dark.  We usually serve a light dinner, but you can host your Kids’ Halloween Party during the day.  This works great for younger kids.  You can serve lunch or light snacks.  Whatever you decide just be sure you serve the kids something hearty before you set them loose at the treat table!

Like Mother Like Daughter’s Mummy Mini Pizzas would fit the bill!  Click here for recipe!  For more Halloween Dinner Ideas click here!

Next comes the fun part, games and activities!  There are so many games that are perfect for a Kids’ Halloween Party you’ll have a hard time picking just a few!

kids' halloween partyMy all time favorite is bobbing for apples.  It’s an absolute must!  I know it can get pretty messy so have lots of towels handy.  Someone’s bound to dive right in![spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

 

kids' halloween partyAnother favorite is a Spooky Sensory Game.  Set out “gross” items in containers that you can place in a box.  Let kids reach in and touch each item and try to guess which body parts they are.

We usually use cooked spaghetti for “intestines”, steel wool for “hair”, peeled grapes for “eyes”, and so on.

Here are some instructions from Inner Child Fun to help you out!

kids' halloween partyThen there are variations of “Pin the Tail” using monsters, ghosts, witches, skeleton, and other Halloween characters instead of the donkey.

You can buy a Halloween version of this game from a party supply store or you can make your own.  Just draw or print a poster with your desired creature then cut out enough of the body party you’re pinning on so each child can have a turn.

 

Party games are fun, kids love them.  But they tend to get the kids too wound up, special when coupled with all the sweets they just consumed.  We like to wind down our Halloween parties with a calmer activities, believe me the parents will thank you!

For older kids, I’d say 5th. grade and up, you can sit them in a circle, dim the lights, or better yet light a lantern (battery operated of course!) and allow them to tell each other ghost stories. Just like camp fire stories!  You’ll be surprised how creative they can be!

A game of “Ghostly Telephone” is another good choice for older kids.  Start with a silly or spooky phrase and have each child whisper it to the next child’s ear and see what the phrase turns out to be.

You can also have the first child start a scary story with the first phrase, the next child adds a line to the story and so on.  I know our pre-teens loved this activity last year!

If your guests are younger you can sit them down and read some not too scary Halloween books to them.  Click here for some not so scary Halloween reads! (affiliate link)

If all else fails or you’ve depleted your bag of games, gather the kids around the telly and put on a Halloween Movie.  Just make sure the movie is age appropriate,  you don’t want younger kids to have nightmares!  Click here for a list of Not So Scary Halloween Movies!

Oh, and don’t forget, have all your guests dress up in their Halloween costumes for the party!  And remember to take lots of pictures!

For more Halloween Party ideas click here!

Shop Halloween Party Supplies on Zazzle.com

Fun Homemade Halloween Treats

Fun Homemade Halloween Treats

Halloween is our family’s favorite holiday, second only to Christmas.  We love the costumes, the parties, and of course the treats!  I’m sure you’ve seen store shelves filling up with Halloween stuff, costumes, decorations, and of course treats.  Sure store bought treats are okay, but part of the fun of the season is making Homemade Halloween Treats!

Here are some of my favorites I found around the web while searching for homemade Halloween treats we should make this year.  So start a family tradition and spook up some of these fun homemade Halloween treats!

homemade halloween treatsThis is one of my favorites!  The Monster is just too cute!

Learn how to make these Frankenstein Marshmallow Pops from Just a Taste!

Make a bunch to stick in a ghoulish vase, it would make an awesomely yummy centerpiece or a “horrible” addition to a candy buffet![spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

homemade halloween treatsWho doesn’t love Oreos, specially the pumpkin spice ones?   Kristyn Merkley of Lil’ Luna took this seasonal treat a step further and created these adorable Pumpkin Oreos for Eighteen25’s Spooktacular September.

Make a batch or two for your little monsters.  I guarantee they’ll love them!

Click here to learn how!  [spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

homemade halloween treatsThese cute Mummy Pretzels by Let’s Dish would make a great addition to a Halloween Party candy buffet!  Or wrap them in clear pretzel bags you can pick up at Walmart’s cake decorating aisle and let the kids give them out tho their classmates!

Click here to learn how to make these!  [spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

homemade halloween treatsDon’t feel like dipping?  No problem!  The kids will have a blast making these cute Lolly Pop Ghosts!

Get instructions from One Little Project!  Click here!  [spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

 

 

 

homemade halloween treatsHere’s a spooky fun twist on a family favorite from Cupcake Diaries, Halloween Chex Mix!

I love the sweet salty crunch of Chex Mix!

Get the recipe here!  [spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

 

homemade halloween treatsHere’s another sweet and salty ghoulish treat.  Witch Fingers by candy expert Elizabeth LaBau of About Food.

Learn how to make them by clicking here![spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

homemade halloween treatsRice Krispie Treats take on the shape of the season with Brandi Bidot’s of She Knows Pumpkin Shaped Treats.

Click here for the recipe![spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

homemade halloween treatsApples and Halloween come together in Country Living’s Poison Candy Apples.  Try this eerie twist on a fall favorite!

Click here for recipe!

These are just a few cute and unique homemade Halloween treats I found.  I’m sure it will help inspire you to create your own spooky creations this year!

Shop Halloween Party Supplies on Zazzle.com