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How to Customize Baby Football Jerseys

by Rosenya Faith, studioD

Your family will glow with team pride when even the youngest member can't resist showing a little team spirit with a brand new, hand-decorated football jersey. All you need is an ordinary, plain colored jersey shirt and you can transform it into the ultimate baby-size tribute to your favorite football team. While you're working on the jersey, you might want to make a few extras in the next sizes up to ensure he can attend any game in style, all season long.

Wash and dry the jersey before transforming it into your youngest sports fan's team jersey. If you decorate the jersey before washing, it may shrink a little, making the new decals fit poorly.

Pick out an iron-on number that is about 1 to 2 inches in size. If you choose a larger decal, it might look disproportionate on the jersey. When choosing the perfect number for the back, center of the jersey, you can select the number of your favorite football player or use his place in the birth order of your family for the number. For example, if he is your first born child, use the number "1," or use the number "3" for your third born. Place the jersey on an ironing board and center the number on the back. Iron on the decal according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Place numbers on the front of the shirt. Use the same numbers for the front of the jersey as the back, but choose numbers that are about twice the size and take up at least 50 percent of the torso of the shirt. Arrange the numbers on the front, center of the jersey and iron these in place.

Spell out words on the back of the jersey. You can spell out the name of your favorite team, or spell out a cute phrase, such as "Mom's #1 Fan." Arrange the letters near the top, back of the jersey. The letters should sit about 1 inch beneath the neckline. The size of the letters will depend on the length of the phrase or name you choose. Bring the jersey with you to choose the iron-on letters and try out different sizes to determine which size fits best. There should be a gap of at least 1/2 inch between this phrase and the number in the center below.

Iron or sew on a small emblem from your favorite football team on the left sleeve of the jersey, or on the front in the top, left corner.

Items you will need
  •  Plain baby-size jersey shirt
  •  Iron-on numbers
  •  Ironing board
  •  Iron
  •  Iron-on letters
  •  Iron or sew-on football team emblem


  • If you can't find a plain jersey, you can pick up one with sewn-on embellishments and use a seam ripper to remove any decals or patches on the baby-size jersey. If you have a jersey with iron-on decals, place the shirt on the ironing board and iron to loosen the glue. Move the iron continuously and then peel the decal off the shirt after 2 to 3 minutes. Apply a spritz or two of hairspray to remove any remaining glue. Wash and dry the shirt before adding your new embellishments.


  • Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt; Megan Nicolay

About the Author

Rosenya Faith has been working with children since the age of 16 as a swimming instructor and dance instructor. For more than 14 years she has worked as a recreation and skill development leader, an early childhood educator and a teaching assistant, working in elementary schools and with special needs children between 4 and 11 years of age.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images