Craft Friday: Sandpaper Art


We’re already past the halfway mark to the return of school. Plans for projects, little adventures, and a family routine have pretty much gone out the window. Along with regular trips to the grocery store and keeping the house picked up. Instead we’ve been spending a great deal of time swimming (and lunching) at the pool, lazing around reading, and shaking our head at the back-to-school section at Target. I’m usually the first person to love the return of school and school supplies, but this year, summer just seems too short.


Anyway, it’s blasted hot and while I didn’t think it was possible, we all are pretty pooled out. Thankfully, I had the “ingredients” for this simple little project.

I used:

-old white t-shirts
-fine grit sandpaper (it’s what I had on hand, grittier paper will get you a more textured look)
-crayons (I’ve heard that Crayola’s are the way to go here as off brand tend to be too waxy)
-an old piece of cardboard
-some parchment paper
-an iron

We printed some templates out on printer paper and taped them to the back of the sandpaper so we could cut them out before coloring them in. You could also just draw a design directly onto the piece of sandpaper. The the kids went to work coloring.

When they were done with their design, I placed an old piece of cardboard between the two layers of t-shirt, placed their template sandpaper/crayon side down, put a piece of parchment over it and ironed it on for about 30 seconds. Before removing the template completely, I checked to make sure it had made a good print and then I placed the parchment directly over the transfer and ironed for about 15 more seconds to set the crayon. I followed that by 20 minutes in the dryer and washed/dried each shirt on its own to make sure it was good and truly set.

It’s a pretty easy project.




Violet learned the tricky part of any kind of transfer – everything prints backwards.

And then because we were having so much fun, we made one for Dad.


I still have a lot of things I want to do before summer comes to an end, but this was a good way to spend a morning.

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    • Thanks, Marian! It really has been nice – even if I’m not getting as many things checked off the to do list as I’d like.

  • I’m voting with Marian. I think long afternoons reading are something we should all put on our lists of things to do. If I don’t, it tends not to get done. 🙂 Love that craft–low tech, creative, fun.