How to add Native American accents to a tee shirt

How to add Native American accents to a tee shirt

Sometimes you’re just in the mood for something new but you don’t necessarily have to go out and purchase a new outfit. Turn a plain shirt into a beautiful Native American work of art with just a few simple touches. Simply add fringe to the hem and sleeves of a brown, tan, or black shirt. Fringe can normally be found in those particular colors. For short sleeve shirts add short fringe. For long sleeves sew the fringe from the underarm seam to the wrist. The same thing can be done to a dress, stitching fringe along the hem and sleeves.

Fabric paints in turquoise, white, black and red can brighten any outfit with Native American touches. Draw inverted “V’s” to represent tee-pees. Or use the dot technique for tee-pees by placing one dot on top, two in the middle and three across the bottom. The tee-pees can be as large or small as you need. Zig-zag patterns often represent water when drawn horizontally. Make the zig-zags around a collar or around hems.

A quick and easy way to change the look of the outfit is to buy buttons shaped like feathers and replace the old buttons. There are dozens of choices at a craft or fabric store. Buttons shaped like tee-pees, wolves or deer are only some of the selections available.

Craft stores also have leather pieces that usually come in 8″X10″ rectangles or a similar size. Cut shapes of tee-pees or a steer head to sew onto a garment. Cut a large one to put on the back of a shirt than a smaller one for the front pocket area. Or cut tiny ones and place them all around the hem. If you don’t sew use fabric glue to attach the leather cut-outs. Make sure the glue says it can be washed without falling apart.

Purchase a rubber stamp with an Indian scene on it and use fabric paints to stamp it onto shirts or jeans. The rubber stamps are easy to use and the pattern won’t disappear in the wash.

String small turquoise beads and hand stitch them to the outfit in any number of places. Make a V coming off the collar and going down the front of a dress or shirt. Or string the beads then put rows of different colors together to make a beaded band for necklines and hems. Too much trouble to string beads? Purchase the type that is strung and formed into a band. These come on a roll and are cut to the length you specify. They are easy to hand stitch onto any garment but usually can’t be machine sewn. They can, however, be glued on with fabric glue.

Buy strips of leather and braid them together. Fashion a belt from the braid or stitch the braid onto a jacket or even boots.

Combine different techniques for the ultimate Native American design. Use fringe around the hem and sleeves then paint the tee-pees onto the collar or shirt front. Or use the shapes cut from leather with the strung beads as a colorful accent.

Combine different techniques

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