At the end of every school year, at almost every school I’ve taught at, we accumulate a mountain of lost clothes that rivals the height of Mt. Everest. Kids lose jackets, hoodies, lunch bags, mittens, hats, scarves, and more. Since their belongings aren’t labeled with their names, and most kids forget to check the lost and found, the clothes remain lost forever.
Take some time with the kids in your life to label their belongings, and you may save a significant amount of money not having to replace lost items. You can even make it a fun activity in anticipation for the new school year.
A simple way to combat this problem is to label clothes with permanent markers or permanent fabric markers. Get a variety of colors to give kids a choice for personalization.
- Buy fabric paint in favorite colors that will show up on the hoodies, jackets and other items that need labeling.
- Paint the palm of a hand with the fabric paint.
- Make a handprint where the label should be placed.
- When the paint dries, kids can write their first and last names on top of their handprints using a permanent marker.
If you have access to a computer and printer, you may want to try labeling clothes with iron-on transfers. With iron-on transfers, you can design a label on a computer, print it onto the transfer paper, and iron your design onto fabric. You can find iron-on transfers at art supply stores or purchase them online. When choosing iron-on transfer paper, be sure to check if the paper is for light or dark colored fabric.
Designing labels can be an opportunity to help your kids build their computer skills while doing something creative and fun.
Computer skills you can teach your kids:
*Create a table
*Download and insert a picture
*Change letter font and size
- Determine how large the labels need to be.
- Create labels using a program like Microsoft Word.
- Print out labels on the transfer paper and cut them to the size and shape needed.
- Follow the package instructions, iron the labels onto the hoodies, jackets and other items that need labeling.
The inside of this hoodie is a little fuzzy. It didn’t work well with the label that has a white background, but it worked perfectly with the label that has a darker color in the background.
Little Owl’s Tips
- Parents should supervise this project.
- Test a small area of the clothing being labeled to make sure markers don’t bleed through fabrics.
- If using iron-on transfers, be sure that the fabric can handle the process.
- Read the instructions for any of the products that you buy before trying them out.
- Keep names on the inside of clothing items and belongings so that kids aren’t broadcasting their names to people they don’t know.