Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

January 6, 2014Allison Murray
Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial


So I’ve really gotten into cutting iron on vinyl and making shirts and tee shirts for myself and my family. It’s easy and the results look professional. Not kind of, maybe, could be considered professional-ish but full blown no handmade ugly here.

And since a while ago I decided I wanted a Crazy Cat Lady shirt I decided to knock up a Silhouette cut file and get after it. And, of course, I simply must share it here with you!

Now, my shirt says “crafty” instead of crazy. This was my dad’s idea and I decided to run with it! But both files are available for you to download and use.

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Silhouette Cut File

Crafty Cat Lady Shirt Silhouette Cut File

If you’d like different text to appear in the cat’s face shape, I used the font BD Cartoon Shout which is free to download here.

Also if you have another use for the cat face shape, click the image below and when open in a new window right click and hit “save image as”.

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

For this project you will need:

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

Place your vinyl shiny side down on your cutting mat and run through your machine. Weed the bits and pieces that you don’t want on the shirt away. For this it will be the bulk of the letters (but not the shapes inside of the A-s or R) and the background all around the outside edge of the cat’s face. Anything that is on here will iron down so be careful to remove everything that you don’t want permanently on your shirt.

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

The clear sheet is tacky and so it sticks fairly well. Use this to your advantage when placing prior to heat setting. I picked this shirt up and moved it around to be sure that it looked straight and well placed. In all honestly I moved it 3 or 4 times before I was happy with it but the sticky just kept sticking!

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

Place something thin on top of your work surface, like a single layer of terry cloth or a pillow case, and heat your iron to the hottest your fabric can take. I went with the cotton setting. Place a small piece of fabric between the iron and the plastic on top of the vinyl and allow the heat to set for a count of about 20. Pick up and move the iron, never sliding it around.

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

Start to peel away the top sheet slowly placing it back down and ironing any bits that haven’t taken to the fabric well.

Once the top sheet is completely off of the applique, take your fingers and carefully run around the shape to be sure everything is tacked down well. Hit anything with the heat of the iron with your cloth placed in between. Continue until everything seems good and secure.

Crazy Cat Lady Shirt Tutorial

Quick tip, allow to cool fully before moving. If the transfer bends before cool, you’ll experience wrinkles in the finished product and it’s not terribly attractive.


I’ve been told that some are having problems with the transfers not lasting through a bunch of washes. So far I’ve not experienced anything like that but my Mimmie taught me long ago that shirts with an applique like this (even store bought ones) need to be turned inside out prior to washing with COOL or COLD water. If your shirt seems like it is starting to crack or peel, it would be best to start hanging to air dry rather than placing in the machine.

I haven’t worn my crafty cat lady shirt yet but I think with this cold week ahead it will get some wear! Thinking about making another that says “this isn’t cat hair on my sweater, it’s love” or “an outfit is never complete without cat hair” but those may be even a bit too weird for me. What do you think? And have you started making these amazing iron transfer tees? I’m officially obsessed!


Comments (1)

  • Raven Fabal

    February 1, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    Dear Allison,

    Your Cat Lady Tee SHirt finally put me over the edge. I love cats, volunteer at a local shelter and started a cat web site, called . I couldn’t afford to keep paying the SiteSell fees, so I gace it up, but I may switch it to a blog format like yours, because I gotta tell you, this place you created is impressive!

    I finally decided to send you a note because I have been enjoying your blog very much for a while now, but like a lot of folks, I forget to give good feedback on a job well done.

    You post the most fun and interesting things, and I suspect that we just have a lot in common because I have done similar or thought about doing many of them.

    I am trying to grow into a professional photographer right now (see but I also paint, sculpt with Fimo, make jewelry, make cat toys for my local shelter and more. I have my photo blog and need to re work the one I had for my poetry and other interests like pumpkin carving etc. Anyway, thanks for a really fun, nifty site. It always brightens my day to visit it.

    Here’s wishing you a good day today. You deserve a nice day!
    Thanks again,
    Raven Fabal

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