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crafted: HOOT owl onesie

My sister-in-law, Colleen, had a great idea for an owl halloween costume for her 8-month-old daughter KT, and she asked us to screenprint a onesie for her to complete the look. KT will be wearing a knitted owl hat like this one but in pink, with a pink tutu, and she envisioned blocky “feathers” screened on the body of a onesie. As I was drafting the design, I added the HOOT in the CAPTURE IT font (thanks to Julee D at warm hot chocolate for the font tip!), and the O’s looked like an owl, which I think is just too cute. The feathers down the arms were JR’s idea, and I did it even though it was a lot of screening & taping & precise alignment for one day (that’s 4 separate ink runs: 1 for the pink body feathers, 1 for the purple body feather, and 2 more for the purple arm feathers). It was so worth the effort. I want this in an adult size! I can’t wait for photos of KT in her costume!

the first (botched) run. not enough pressure. good thing JR bought a 3-pack!

the first (botched) run. not enough pressure. good thing JR bought a 3-pack!

The image above was my first attempt. I’m including it so you can see that it’s not all unicorns and rainbows. Mistakes happen, it’s part of the process. In addition to not getting a solid screen, it was too high – it touched the neckline. Alignment is a bitch!

A clean imprint! The pink feathers are done.

A clean imprint! The pink feathers are done.

We made the mistake of not ordering a onesie platen (the hard plastic insert that holds the shape and keeps the item stuck to the surface), so I had to improvise. It’s painter’s tape city up in here. Don’t worry – I reuse it until it can be used no more. :)

the purple owl feather is now done

the purple owl feather. HOOT!

After I washed all the pink ink off the screen and let it dry, I taped off the rest of the screen so no ink could seep through, and allowed enough time for the pink ink to dry. I didn’t move the onesie so I didn’t have to do any tedious re-aligning before screening the purple feather. After that was complete, I washed all the purple ink off the screen, let it dry, and re-taped the screen so only the arm feathers could pass ink through.

This is where it gets complicated. Trying to figure out exactly where the top side of the arms are for the arm feathers was hard! You don’t want it too much to the front or the back. It has to be *just* right. And then, after screening one arm, placing the other arm in exactly the same place so the feathers are lined up when she’s wearing it… HARDER! There was much squinty eye-balling and crouching and rulers used and finger-widths calculated and taping and re-taping. After the ink dried, to set the ink I ironed each area for three minutes on each side with a piece of paper between the iron and the piece. That’s a lot of ironing.

the completed HOOT owl onesie, with purple arm feathers

the completed HOOT owl onesie, with purple arm feathers

I’m really pleased with this project, and I can’t wait to show off the photos of KT in her costume after Halloween! If you’re interested in this onesie, I’ll be selling it in my Etsy screenprint shop: snarkylark.etsy.com.

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6 comments

1 John Forsythe { 10.15.10 at 11:54 am }

Turned out so nice. Great job!

2 Ashley { 10.15.10 at 1:07 pm }

Thanks for getting it into the mail to Colleen today! I’m sure she’ll love it.

3 Julee { 10.16.10 at 10:28 am }

Adorable. I wish I had a baby who could wear it. Oh wait, no I don’t.

4 Ashley { 10.18.10 at 12:55 pm }

Ha ha, Julee! Be careful what you wish for, right? I’m thinking of making it in a few larger kiddo sizes, all the way up to grown-up sizes. JR wants it in manly colors in his size. :)

5 John Forsythe { 10.25.10 at 1:04 pm }

Yes, I kinda just want a shirt with feather sleeves.

6 Colleen { 10.29.10 at 1:17 pm }

I’m so behind on posting an update to this – I LOVED it! It turned out so great. The HOOT was a fab idea as was the feathers on the sleeves.

Some pics (more to come) can be seen here: http://colleenkoenig.blogspot.com/2010/10/kt-is-09-months.html

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