As I was pinteresting party ideas for our upcoming Sesame Street party, I came across the cutest Sesame Street t-shirts.
The t-shirts themselves were the color of the character, with just the character’s facial features printed on. For example, the Elmo one was a red t-shirt with Elmo’s eyes, nose, and mouth printed on the shirt.
Right away, I thought it would be perfect for Ash, our toddler, and I to wear them at the party. I looked at the price and was deterred, but then I thought that I could make them.
Planning the DIY T-shirts
Originally, my plan was just the three shirts, with Ash and I being Bert and Ernie (because we are life partners ;)) and our son being Elmo.
I was going through my felt craze then and thought I could make them out of felt. However, my sisters do not like to miss out on anything, so as soon as they heard my plan, they jumped on board.
My sister Bridget specifically asked to be Oscar because she loves trash (she turns it into some pretty cool things). My sister PK certainly won’t be left out of anything (she started group hugs!), so her number-loving self was assigned the Count. They both somehow convinced my parents to wear them also. I called Ash’s family to see if they wanted in on the fun, and they did 🙂
So I went from making three shirts to making 14! Since I was now making so many shirts, I had to throw out my felt idea. Ash suggested iron transfers, and they worked like a charm.
With 14 shirts, we had to employ as many characters as we could think of. We used Bert, Ernie, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Grover, Oscar, the Count, Tellie, Murray, Big Bird, Zoe, Abby, Rosita, and Baby Bear.
Materials for the Sesame Shirts
- Shirts – in the correct size and colors. We used Shirts in Bulk for the shirts. They have so many style, size, and color options. We were able to find Murray and Telly’s shade of red. Their prices are amazingly low – we got a couple of shirts for just $2.50! Definitely check them out 🙂
- Iron Transfers – We looked at a lot of different techniques for printing the shirts, and we decided that iron transfers would look best. A big problem with the transfers is that they don’t last after you wash the shirt. That wasn’t a concern for us because we really just wanted the shirts for the day of. We used this dark fabric inkjet iron transfer because we would be printing on a variety of colors. If we were just going to be printing on white, we would have been fine with a light fabric transfer.
- Piece of cardboard – that will fit inside of the shirt, used as a sturdy surface for ironing
- Inkjet printer – to print the transfers on
Instructions for the Sesame Street T-Shirts
For not having any experience with iron-on anything (or even an iron…), this DIY project was easy peasy.
Printing the Transfers
First, we printed the images (that we googled) on the transfer paper.
With most transfer papers, you have to print the mirrored image, but this transfer paper was different. We just printed the pictures as they were onto the paper.
For the printer settings, we used the highest quality print and set the paper type to normal (not glossy like we assumed).
Preparing the Transfers and Shirts
Next, we cut out pictures out. Some pictures were all one image – like Bert, while others were more complicated – like the Count.
If we went with a light fabric transfer paper, we would not have needed to cut them out; however, there would have been a tinted background, which we didn’t want.
After prewashing the shirts so they would be nice and clean for the party, I put the face cut-outs on the shirt.
To accurately space the elements, I used the leftover transfer cut-out as my guide.
I had to carefully remove the cut-out, trying to keep each element from moving too much.
Ironing the Transfer On the Shirts
Then, I put down the piece of wax paper that came with the transfer, and slowly moved the iron back and forth.
The purpose of this was to keep the heat from being applied directly to the transfer.
This also made it easy to keep the elements flat against the fabric while the iron moved around.
The Final Products
I slowly lifted the wax paper to see it looked perfect!
Within half an hour of starting the iron, I had a few Sesame Street t-shirts ready to go.
Here are most of the Sesame shirts – I tried to get them all in one line-up, but I had already sent the Count and Tellie to my sister and her boyfriend.
Here’s a few pictures of the party people with their Sesame Street t-shirts:
Cutting the cake 🙂
The Sesame Street t-shirts looked so great on the day of the party. Our little one had a great time pointing out all of his favorite characters on the shirts of his favorite people 🙂
I do want to reiterate that after washing the transfers did not hold up. They faded right away. However, we knew this when we decided to go with this technique. The Sesame Street t-shirts were all perfect for the day of the party 🙂
And it was very cost-effective, especially with using Shirts in Bulk for all of the shirts!