There are countless ways you can transform an everyday shirt into a personalized cheerleading top. Rather than ordering pre-made shirts, you can design your own in no time at all. It will also be a great way to show team spirit and bond with the rest of your squad.
Recommended Shirt Supplies
Craft stores are a great resource for T-shirt design materials. In addition to the shirts, you'll need fabric paint and markers, fabric glue, iron-on decals, paintbrushes, rulers, stencils and other embellishments. Bleach, spray paint and fabric dye (tie-dye) and other swatches of cloth can also be used. If the shirts are for the whole squad, make sure they follow the same basic color scheme or pattern; from there every member can add their own personal touches.
Shirt Slogans and Graphics
Create a list of possible graphics, concepts or team phrases that you'll use for your shirt before you begin. This helps determine how much will fit on the shirt and the various ways it can be laid out. For example, you may want to include your school logo, name of the squad or players, and date---if it's for homecoming or a big game. The shirts could also have more general sayings such as "Go! Fight! Win!," "In It to Win It," "We Cheer Hard," "Cheerleaders Rock," "Everyone Loves a Cheerleader," "We've Got the Spirit," or "Cheerleaders Do It Best." Browsing different cheerleading magazines and stores or sites that sell cheer apparel can also provide you with additional slogans, which you can customize or make your own (see links below). Graphics such as pompoms, team mascots, megaphones and like designs can also be incorporated. If you're making shirts for a squad, keep in mind that a slogan can be broken up onto more than one shirt to spell out something when the squad forms a line.
Ways to Transform a Shirt
Aside from using the supplies above, you can also change the look of your shirt by attaching shapes and letters of different fabrics. Use fabric scissors to cut the length or width of the shirt and to add features such as fringe, or you can make slashes throughout the shirt or cut very small slits (approximately one third of an inch) in a row, diagonally or horizontally. Once you've made the slits, weave ribbon, shoe laces or other fabrics through each hole and tie it on both ends. This allows you to alter the shirt's fit and add an original, funky touch. Use a material that's the same color as your team's combination.