The T-shirt Project was a final project for Metro Community College’s Principles of Fashion Design course. Student’s were tasked with creating three garments by embellishing blank tees and sweatshirts, without the use of a sewing machine.

T-Shirt Project Mood Board

T-Shirt Project Mood Board


Sample/Prototype Tee

After assembling a mood board, I started on a sample/prototype garment.

I knew that I wanted to use acrylic paints as opposed to fabric-specific dyes because I wanted the garments to show signs of wear. With an acrylic paint splatter, the dried paint will crack and flake off over time.

With this tee, I experimented with different dilutions of acrylics in water. The least diluted acrylics had to be dripped onto the tee, creating large, thick splotches of paint. As the acrylics were diluted further, the paint was able to be splattered using a brush, creating long thin lines of paint. The most diluted acrylics were not visible when splattered, and had to be poured onto the garment from a container. This created a stain like effect that I ultimately did not use moving forward.

Final Garments


My final three pieces were designed to be worn as one singular look, with the ability to wear single pieces on their own or mix and match. I wanted the garments to be cohesive without looking exactly alike.

The first tee is a basic, boxy Hanes tee. Using a less diluted paint, I was able to create large areas of color.


The second tee is a longline tee from H&M. On the right side of the garment I hand-stitched a gathering along the hem, creating an asymmetric drape to the garment. Because of the gathering and the longer cut of the tee, this garment was able to be layered underneath the Hanes tee.

Using a more diluted acrylic, I was able to splatter paint the tee with paint brushes. I wanted this to be a more minimal effect, to balance the maximal paint splotches of the other tee.


My third garment was a plain gray sweatshirt cut open in the front, with hand stitched denim elbow patches and a paint splattered denim embellishment on the back.

I wanted to create a piece of outerwear to pair with the two tees, something visually similar to a MA-1 bomber jacket or a traditional Japanese noragi.

The elbow patches were created from old denim scraps. They were cut into patches and embellished with sashiko stitching. The back emblem was assembled from old denim scraps, glued together, cut into a circle, and embellished with splatter painting to tie the look together.

The Look

Full look - styled, modeled, and photographed by Zachary Roland. Tees and Jacket are paired with H&M Jeans and Thorogood Boots.