We use stencils in many of our designs. Most often employed as a pattern to follow when adding elaborate embroidery, beading, and appliqué, we also love the simplicity of a stenciled pattern on a basic silhouette.

This DIY Stencil T-shirt focuses on the simple beauty that emerges when you combine just the right pattern, stencil, and colors. The techniques used are easy for both the beginning and the advanced sewer to master. This design is our classic T-shirt Top. Here we used the sleeveless version, but you could use any sleeve length, depending on your personal style and taste.


The stenciling technique works up more quickly than most of our embroidery techniques so, while this shirt won’t exactly offer instant gratification, its simple construction doesn’t take long to complete. You could opt to use a stencil from the designs in our Maker Supplies + Stencils section or create your own.

The top has a slightly fitted waist and a longer length than a standard T-shirt. Our T-shirt pattern (available in Alabama Studio Sewing + Design) measures 26” from the shoulder, but the length can be easily adjusted.


T-shirt Top pattern (available in Alabama Studio Sewing + Design)
1 yard 60” wide 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey fabric (for a single-layer top)
1 spool Button Craft thread
Basic sewing supplies: fabric scissors, rotary cutter and cutting mat, tailor’s chalk, transparent ruler, pins, needles

Stenciling supplies for the stenciling method of your choice (see Alabama Stitch Book to explore stenciling options)


Fabric Weight – 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey
Fabric Color – Silt
Button Craft thread – Dogwood #155
Stencil – Anna’s Garden
Textile paint color – Pearl White
Binding stitch – Cretan

P.S.: Customize this T-Shirt, or any one of twenty possible projects with a different stencil, color options, and embroidery techniques through our Custom DIY page.

2 comments on “DIY STENCILED T-SHIRT

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  1. Susan Considine

    I am excited to try this, and love that you supply all of the materials, but I am wondering about the paint/dye; is it environmentally friendly? If not, is there an alternative?

    Thank you!

  2. Marilyn

    The paint doesn’t look white to me. I like the darker gray appearance. Was the paint diluted? If so, how much?