Sunday, March 30, 2014

Bleach dyed graffiti tee tutorial...brought to you by the Bad Wolf Corporation

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial

*This post is dedicated to all my nerd friends. You know who you are!*

So in case you may have missed it here, and here, and here and here..I (Jessica) am pretty much a giant nerd. Mostly I keep this fact hidden fairly well from the general public, so unless you know me very well (or you read our blog!) you might not even notice it. Especially since most of the time I look like this, which is to say convincingly "normal" with not much hint at the deep abyss of geekdom that lurks beneath. Behold:

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial
Doctor Who collage (featuring me gazing adoringly at the 11th...wait 12th...Doctor) courtesy of Christopher Burrup 

But there are times when a nerdy girl just wants to let her geek flag fly! And today is one of those times. Because I've been itching for a Doctor Who themed tee shirt for quite some time, and today I'm going to show you how I made my own!

**edited to add, if you want to see how I remixed this shirt into 5 outfits, check that out here!**
bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial
Oh look! Normal on the outside...but with a deliciously nerdy center!

Fans of Doctor Who may remember a teensy little phrase that was seriously important to the main story arc in the new Series 1:

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial
photo courtesy of doctorwho on tumblr

Yeah buddy. I've wanted a tee with "Bad Wolf" written on it, graffiti style, forever. I already had thrifted this super soft black Hugo Boss tee a while back and I knew it would be perfect for making into a slouchy slogan tee, Doctor Who style. For those of you who are not fans of The Doctor, you could use this technique to do any words or image you wanted, mine just happens to be super nerdy!

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial

1. I started with some cardboard, a black tee, and Clorox precision tip bleach gel. My thinking was that this would make a nice, crisp clean bleach line because I looked everywhere and I could not find a bleach pen. ANYWHERE! Does Clorox still make those? It drove me crazy!
2. I put the cardboard inside the tee and made sure it covered the whole area I'd be writing on.
3. Then I started writing. And here's where it went wrong. This bleach "gel" is not actually very "gel-like" at all, and it just spewed everywhere! None the less I wrote out my words as best as I could and prayed for good results.
4. I left the bleach on the shirt for about five minutes, and then put it in the washer/dryer hoping for the best...

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial

5. ...except after washing and drying, THIS is how it turned out. Not what I had in mind, and you can't really read it. Boo!
6. So I decided to try again, which actually was me desperately trying to save this shirt. But it worked! I used a tiny dish, more bleach, and some Q-tips.
7. I dipped the Q-tip into the bleach and gently "painted" on a thin line of bleach over the existing words.
8. Then I let the bleach sit for about ten minutes, to make sure it really showed up this time.

Here's the final result:

bleach dyed bad wolf graffiti t-shirt tutorial

It turned out so much better after the second bleach application! It's still not exactly how I pictured it, but I do love that it still looks like graffiti (which is authentic to the me). I may or may not make another one, maybe with a reference to Angels stealing a blue box.

Thanks guys for checking this little tutorial out! If you're looking for more fun DIY clothing ideas you can check out our adult clothing projects here. And in the meantime, tell me what you think of my new shirt? Do you think this turned out looking like graffiti?


  1. Awesome! I pinned to my Doctor Who board!

  2. I love this shirt! Very crafty!

  3. I love it! I might have to make myself one soon :) Hubby better watch out- I'm off to raid his closet!!

  4. Another Who fan, wowza!
    Funnily enough I have a half done bleach t-shirt that is still at the "fail" stage! (I was trying a Harry Potter idea, I am a member of multiple fandoms!) I need to try to save it, thank you for the kick up the backside I need to get it out and have another bash!

    1. No problem! And yes, us Who fans seem to be everywhere! Drop us a link when you finish your Harry Potter shirt, I'd love to see it!

  5. SO fantastic! As a Whovian myself, I sort of kind of need this, and a fez.


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