DIY helvetica tee

helvetica alphabet tee

Like we shared with our recent back to school hacks post, we love using old t-shirts to create something new and exciting! We have a few to share with you this month, starting with this Helvetica Alphabet Tee. This is a popular t-shirt style we’ve seen around, but wanted to test it out for our little guys, here’s how we did it.
DIY helvetica tee


1. Using your favorite word processing program, open a new document and type the desired letters. We used Helvetica, with a font size of 350 and printed two separate pages since both letters wouldn’t fit on one page (you might be able to mess with margins and get them on one page, but two works too!

2. Print your sheets out and then using an Exacto knife, cut the letters out of the page (if your desired letters have “islands” or inside cut holes  – like A, B, R, O, P etc. – you’ll want to hold onto those island pieces.

3. Remove the black letter piece and place the paper stencil on your shirt. If you have islands, you’ll need to place those back in the desired position.  A piece of printer paper will work just fine for one t-shirt, if you’re planning on making more you might need to use something sturdier like card stock or a thin plastic sheet.

4. Secure the stencil in place with heavy cans, or weighted objects. Make sure you center yours better than we did above. 🙂 Using fabric or acrylic paint, paint over the stencil. Islands are tricky in the sense that you need to be able to hold them in place while you’re painting, sometimes an extra set of hands is nice for that part!

5. Paint a few coats , remove the stencil, touching up any edges, and let it dry completely, then enjoy!

15 thoughts on “helvetica alphabet tee”

    1. i’d use a brush with tight bristles vs loose so you have more control around the edges. use an acrlyic or fabric paint!

  1. love this!! and that cute Hayes!
    Going to make an M for my boy.
    PS Whenever I paint on clothes I use freezer paper. You can iron the shiny side down, paint, then peel off.

  2. I love this easy, fun one of a kind t shirt idea! ‘Ee’ was sold out at American Apparel for my everett. Will definitely be making one! Thank you ladies!

  3. Cute! I think I’ll do something like this for my engineer friend but I’ll put his favorite element (because you know he is a geek if he has a favorite element). Actually, now that I think about it, my friend’s little boy has a favorite element too from some flashcards he has. I should make one for him too! I can include the box and element number. Very cute!

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