We have a really fun and easy DIY project for you in these Handprint Flag t-shirts, perfect for the 4th of July. As a family, one of our fun traditions is to wear matching t-shirts for holidays. The biggest “matching t-shirt” holiday for our family has been Independence Day.
A couple of years ago, I started doing something extra – making the kids’ matching t-shirts simply by turning their handprints into a flag design.
These are so easy, you can make them in a few minutes, and then let them dry overnight. So you can make them semi-last minute if you need to.
Not only is it easy to make these handprint American Flag t-shirts for the 4th of July or any other American holiday, but they are super frugal too. In fact, these will end up being cheaper than buying 4th of July themed t-shirts for Independence Day celebrations.
In fact, these handprint flag t-shirts ended up only being less than $3 each t-shirt, in fact, they were $2.85 each!
Along with these t-shirts comes a great memory too! Have I told you lately how much I love our kids’ handprints? They are so precious and awesome from the littlest to the biggest.
The craft projects that include their hands are my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE. I don’t care how cool a craft is, the second my kids’ hands are in it – it will beat all others. 🙂 I just love anything that reminds me how precious and how much of a blessing they are.
So, this is the second year we have made these exact t-shirts for the 4th of July Celebrations! Last year’s shirts are now in their memory bins. It is so fun to see their growth each year for the fourth and this particular craft is practical as we use to buy matching family Old Navy shirts for the 4th when they were $5. Well, these are cheaper and FAR cuter! Plus I don’t have to stress about getting to Old Navy in time to get the correct colors and sizes for our now large family!
How To Make Handprint Flag T-Shirts
These shirts take me about 30 minutes to make for 5 kids! That is AMAZING for a homemade clothing project times 5!
I also make something similar at Thanksgiving which is fun as it is nearly a half year later and I get another set of adorable hands on clothing! Not to mention, I have made shirts like this for daddy for several years. He wears them for a while and then they go into the cedar chest. I will have to share pictures of those for Father’s Day too (so keep watching!).
I buy the supplies at Hobby Lobby each time and each time I have gotten the shirts (of all colors!) on sale! But even if they are not on sale, you can pick up shirts of all colors for $3.49 everyday at Hobby Lobby. But it seems that at least once a month, they are 30% off = $2.44 each shirt!!
Then the fabric paints that wash of skin super easily are $1.29 each – which is not a bad price. They go on sale too, but not as often. However, you can do what I do (because t-shirt making is a popular sport around here) I will pop into Hobby Lobby with my 40% off coupon and grab a paint at a time = .77 each.
So… back to this specific project…… you will need to make Handprint Flag t-shirts:
- T-shirts ($2.44 – $3.49 each)
- Foam brushes (.10 – .25 each)
- Fabric Paint (.77-$1.29 each) in Red, Blue and clear sparkle (or white or both!)
- Cardboard for the form to put the t-shirt around (free from home)
- If you want to make stars on the handprints, you could get a foam star stamp for about .25. We didn’t do that this time, but it’s cute too!
Total cost for me to make 5 t-shirts = $14.27 = $2.85 a shirt….. now you can see why this is one of my favorite projects each year. It is SUPER ADORABLE and it is a VERY NICE PRICE!
Here’s how to make Handprint Flag t-shirts:
- Form each t-shirt around a cut piece of cardboard. I then secure the shirt in the back with tape and pull the sleeves together and tape them down so they aren’t loose and flapping all over. You want the shirt to be snug and secure so your prints and paints don’t get messed up.
- Have your kids wash their hands – you don’t want dirty prints!
- Then simply paint their hand with the foam brushes with the blue paint – it is the left hand you are painting. You want the paint thick – not like painting a wall. So, I often feel in spots that look more “bare” with more paint.
- Then have them relax their hand and let you do the work of placing it exactly where you want it and press the hand down.
- I will then also press each joint and palm parts, so the paint will “peel” off their hands and onto the t-shirt.
- You remove their hand, using your other hand to push against the shirt to pull it off their painted hand. It “sticks” just a tad. You don’t want smudges and accidental touch of a painted finger or hand anywhere else…. it does NOT come of clothing! It comes off skin super, super easily with a bit of soap and water – but not clothes. So mistakes will be unforgivable.
Look at that print…isn’t it just the cutest? It makes me want to grab that child now and plaster them with kisses –
but don’t worry, no kids were harmed during the kisses plastering session,
but for some reason, giggles eek 🙂
- Now don’t think that their hand’s will be free of paint. I immediately walk them to the bathroom holding their hand up and out of the way so they DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING on the way. 🙂 Have them wash it all up!
- Repeat the blue hand step for each child/shirt.
- Then paint the strips on using the tip of the foam brush. T-shirts don’t really allow you to make “strokes,” you really just have to “dab” it on as you dab the line across with the brush. You might want to practice on something or an old piece of fabric so you know what to expect with this part – again, mistakes are unforgivable. I just eye-ball it, which mean’s the stripes are not perfect at all, but fun and rustic.
- Then set aside to dry before adding stars. It doesn’t take long to dry.
- Then, if you want to use white paint too, paint the star stamp with the white paint and add as many stars as you can/want to the blue hand print.
- Then let that dry (again, not long!).
- Finally, you can also add a layer of clear sparkle paint to the whole thing…including the white space stripes, which is what we did this year! It is so pretty, the pictures don’t do justice for the festive sparkles! They shine in the sun and they shine in the light of the fireworks, so our kids were happy to add these to the shirts this year!
- Your adorable, kid kissed t-shirts are ready for their celebratory debut for the Fourth of July (or whatever you are using them for!).
Happy Birthday America!
We’re ready to celebrate!
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This is such a clever idea. I love it!
That is a really amazing idea for making hand print T-shirts and specially for country flags. For using this idea we can save our printing price.
This is a neat project,
Ours turned out great!
Awesome! Do you have a picture to share? We’d love to see them! You can email it at firstname.lastname@example.org. 🙂