I absolutely love Iron-on. I have used it in dozens of projects, with amazing results. Even as much as I love iron-on, I have to admit, it did have some limitations. Not anymore! New SportFlex Iron On™ from Cricut is made to be put on stretchy clothes, no more stressing about your design not stretching on a t-shirt. SportFlex also opens the doors to adding customization to new material including Nylon and Polyester, making it the perfect choice to personalize your activewear. The best part? It works fabulously on swimsuits!
SportFlex is thin, flexible, stretchable and lightweight and it features the Cricut StrongBond™ Guarantee* for long-lasting results that stick, which is just what you need for swimsuits!
I have always wanted to customize swimsuits for my daughter’s but didn’t have the right materials. We spend a LOT of time in the pool every summer so I knew it would be extra fun to have custom suits. I have been incredibly pleased with how these rash guards are holding up! They look fantastic even after lots of time in chlorine. Here is how to make your own.
DIY Rash Guard With Cricut
For this project you will need:
- a blank white rash guard
- SportFlex Iron-on in Fuschia
- SportFlex Iron-on in Metallic Gold
- SportFlex Iron-on in Black
- SportFlex Iron-on in Seafoam
- a Cricut
- Cricut EasyPress or Iron
- Cricut Brightpad
To make life really easy, you can find my cut files here. Follow the instruction below for resizing or creating from scratch.
Open up and sign into Cricut Design Space. Your screen will look similar to above. There will be a top banner, followed by a banner of your latest projects. You can see some of my most recent projects on the screen above. Below that will be the Make it Now projects. Hit the green plus sign next your projects to get started.
Using Cricut Images
Your new project will open up for you as a blank grid. Click on the images tab on the left-hand side of the screen to start this project. First search for shells in the top right corner search bar. Select the image you like and then insert your preferred shell into the project.
Then repeat this step for the mermaid. We are looking for a mermaid tail specifically. When you are looking for images you will see a price for each one, you can buy your images individually or subscribe to Cricut Access which allows you to use any of the images that have a little green A in the top left corner of the image.
Add text by hitting the text button in the far left menu. A text box will pop up and you can type what you want the project to say. For this project, I typed Mermaid Hair in one text box and don’t care in another. This lets me select different fonts for each box. Design Space will pull all of the fonts on your computer into the program for you to pull from as well.
One of the really amazing things Cricut has created to help you in your project is the templates in Design Space. Click Templates on the left-hand menu and you will be able to set your screen to look like what you are making. This will help you visually as you design to make sure elements are where you want them to be.
Once you have inserted the image into your project you can resize it and move it around. Resize the image by clicking and dragging on the double arrow symbol that appears when you have the image selected.
Every shirt will be a little bit different because of the size of the shirt but for my older daughter wear a size 10 rash guard, the fins were about 8 inches wide.
There is a size box at the top of the screen that lists how big the image is, you can adjust the width and height here if you don’t want to manually toggle the blue arrow key.
Now that you have added your words, the shells and the tails, add the pearls for the necklace too. Do this on the shapes menu on the left-hand side of the screen. Add a circle and resize it to your desired size.
Rearrange the elements until they look like you want them to, then it is time to change the color on them.
One of my favorite features of Cricut Design Space is that when you change the colors of elements in the layers pallet, the program will assume that you want to cut those items out of a different kind of material. To change the colors of something, go over to the far right side and find the element you want to change. For text boxes, they are usually represented by the first letter in the line of text. For images, it will show a small version of the image. Click on the colored black dot and a color menu will pop up and you can change it to another color.
When your project looks the way you want it, it the Make It button in the top right corner of the screen. Hit the mirror image button on the right-hand side, your project will flip on the screen and look backward. You need to do this for each color of SportFlex BEFORE you cut.
Place the SportFlex shiny side down onto your Cricut mat and then load your mat into your machine, spin the dial to iron-on and hit the flashing Cricut button. For this project, you will cut four different times because we are using four different colors of SportFlex .
Peel the heat transfer off of your mat and then weed (peel apart) the SportFlex until just your design remains on the sticky backing. Stick the SportFlex face down onto your rash guard You will be able to see through the plastic backing so you can put your project together just the way you want it. Just make sure that none of the letters or images are touching the plastic backing of another element or it will fuse to that instead of the rashguard.
Ironing on a rashguard can be really difficult. For a rashguard, you want to go with a lower setting so you don’t melt your project. I start with a lower setting on my EasyPress or Iron and apply pressure for a longer amount of time. Watch your design and rashguard carefully and use a sheet of parchment over the entire design to help prevent any melting. With a rashguard, it is really important to peel the SportFlex cool. So iron on your design, make sure it is set, allow it cool down and then peel the carrier sheet off of the top of the project.
As soon as you have peeled the carrier sheet off, your swimsuit is ready to use! Ours have done really well with both chlorine and salt water!
Did you know that you can personalize a swimsuit with a Cricut?
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.
This is a wonderful tutorial. Your project turned out great. I’ve always wanted to own a circuit machine. They look like a wonderful investment.
robin rue says
I had NO idea that you could make something like this with a cricut. That is a seriously awesome idea.
Alli Smith says
I love that you can now use an iron-on on stretchy clothing. I love the rash guard shirts and thanks to Cricut, the new Sportflex Iron-On offers a whole new world of iron-on possibilities.
Those came out great looking. Wasn’t aware they had come out with something for stretchy material. This is wonderful and will be very popular.
Amber Myers says
How cute! I really need to get a Cricut because I just love iron on stuff. I usually pay people to make them for me on Etsy but it seems easy enough to do on my own.
How cool that you can iron on stretchy material with it. I never thought of that before bet I bet it would mess up some designs. These are adorable.
Melissa Chapman says
Cricut is a great machine for DIY projects. I don’t have a kid under 13 but it is still a nice idea. I will ask for one of these so I can make my own projects.
Jenn @ EngineerMommy says
I love those shirts. They look soo cute. I bet my girls would love them too!
That is wicked! Never heard of this before but I’m game with all my kids. Looks like a great investment
Karen Morse says
Such a cool idea for a personalized rash guard. I’ve never tried personalizing one before and I think Cricut is perfect for doing exactly that. Love how it turned out!
Sara Welch says
Oh the joys of mermaid hair. I have a friend with it and she has a heck of a time keeping up with it.
Alison Rost says
It’s so adorable! This is why I love Cricut because it allows you to make designs like this and pretty much use it on everything, from cards to clothes! Love the design that you put together too.
Carol Cassara says
Cricut is such a cool gadget to have! Love that you can make different prints and designs. It’s really lovely what you made for the girls.
That gadget looks so cool. I never knew of it. Now I want to try it and design some things for my baby girl in the future.
chubskulit rose says
A friend of mine has a cricut and she does a lot of cool projects like this. That is one cool design you made.
Sandy N Vyjay says
This sounds really great. Being able to customize the swimsuit with Cricut, so convenient indeed.
Amy h says
Wow! This is great! I never thought to do an Iron on to a rash guard or swimsuit! I really love the design that you created
Fi Ni Neachtain says
Those t-shirts turned out beautifully! What a fun way to customise plain clothes and make them your own. Love the mermaid theme!
Angela Bethea says
Oh I love personalized Tshirts and mugs too. This is really cool! I didn’t know about Cricut until now. Perfect for the next DIY projects.