Saturday, November 19, 2011

No Sew Turkey Shirts

A few weeks ago while getting my daily Pinterest fix, I came across an adorable ribbon turkey shirt. And since I don’t have any crafts lined up for Thanksgiving, I thought I would try to recreate the look for Hannah and Noah.
Cute, right?
Unlike many Pinterest projects, the link associated with this picture didn’t take me to any instructions. Boo. After some Google Image fishing, I saw a lot of variations of this shirt for sale on Etsy. They’re adorable and yes, I could buy them, but I love the feeling of accomplishment that comes with seeing a project through. So, I went out and gathered my supplies not really knowing how it was all going to come together. The only thing I really knew was that this little turkey would somehow need to get on that shirt without the aid of a sewing machine.
I did a little more research online, this time just searching for “kid’s turkey shirts”. I found some adorable shirts on The Cottage Home complete with a detailed tutorial and printable turkey body template. Score! Even though the shirt on this site wasn’t exactly the ribbon shirt I had been planning, I knew I could modify the instructions to fit my project.

So here is my version!

1 Plain T-Shirt or Dress
Turkey Body Template: You can draw one yourself, or just download the convenient printable version from
The Cottage Home.
Chalk or Fabric Pen
Wonder Under or similar product
Glue Gun (or fabric glue)


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Start by cutting out your turkey body template. Cut a square of fabric and a square of Wonder Under large enough for your turkey body. I actually wound up cutting the pieces separately rather than stacked as shown in the picture. If they’re not the EXACT same size, that’s okay, but they should at least be close to the same size and shape.

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You can set the Wonder Under aside for now and start working on your ribbon. Decide how you want the ribbon laid out in advance. Play around with alternating the colors.

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Now, grab your turkey body, flip it over so that the back is facing up and start assembling and applying your ribbon with hot glue or fabric glue. Put a teen tiny smidge of glue at the bottom (back) of your ribbon. Just enough to hold it together but not so much that it will get lumpy when it dries. Next, make a loop and secure the end where you applied your teeny tiny smidge of glue.Now put another teeny tiny smidge of glue on the bottom front of the ribbon loop where you’ll attach it to the turkey body and press the ribbon to the fabric. Repeat this with the rest of your ribbon. I alternate wide ribbon with skinny ribbon and had the colors mirroring each other on either side.
Remember that Wonder Under you cut out with your turkey body? Once all of those ribbon loops are attached, grab the Wonder Under cut out, your t-shirt & your turkey body and head over to the ironing board. Peel the translucent paper and the paper backing from your Steam-a-Seam. You should be able to see through it now. Line it up on the back side of your ribbon-covered turkey body. Just place it right on top of all of those ribbon ends. Flip both pieces over and position them onto your t-shirt.
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Put a wash-cloth over your turkey body and place the hot iron over the whole pile. You want to concentrate the iron’s heat on the middle where your adhesive is, and not on the sides where you could (and will!) flatten your pretty ribbon loops.
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You can add a little orange beak with fabric and stop here if you want. Or, you can go to the next step and add some buttons for eyes with your hot glue.

And Voila! You have a Ribbon Turkey :)
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{she was still wet from the cloth under the iron}

I made two different styles. The first one was a girly turkey for Hannah’s dress. This second one was for Noah’s t-shirt and is the same concept, just a little more time consuming since you have to cut more fabric.

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Start by cutting out fabric in the shape of feathers. I used 11 pieces total. I didn’t end up liking the one dark brown feather so, I changed it out with another tan one. Just play around with your fabrics until you like the way it looks.
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I  added a beak and eyes to this little guy too.
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{He is kind of see through because he was also still wet}

And that’s it! You’re done!

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