A friend has recently introduced me to the wonderful world of freezer paper stencils. To my knowledge, freezer paper is sold widely in America, to wrap things that are going in the freezer I imagine. In the UK, it seems the only place to get the stuff is in craft shops. The paper is waxy on one side and matt on the other, so perfect for drawing out your stencil, then ironing it to material causing the wax to stick and form a seal preventing fabric paint from bleeding. A quick search for 'Freezer paper stencils' brings up some amazingly intricate pieces of work, with a very professional finish. I had to give it a try for some shirts for Alice.
I made a few sketches, and she chose two she liked the best. Robot and snails it was.
I'm not going to write a 'how to' guide, as there are so many fantastic ones easily available on-line. The video tutorial here was very helpful to me, as was this blog post. It was easy to do, although you could scale up the difficulty level by choosing a more detailed design. It would be a fantastic way to add detail to custom made dressing up clothes too, which I think will be my next project!
This is what I came up with. No action shots, unfortunately, as Alice has gone camera shy!