Sunday, November 13, 2011

Printing on fabric { craft techniques }

There are a many different ways to print on fabric.  You're going to want to think about a few things before you decide the method to use:
  • Do I want to do this myself at home or do I want spend money on a professional?
  • Does the fabric need to be washed?
  • What size piece of printed fabric do I need?
  • Will the fabric be exposed to heavy use (e.g., like a tote bag)?
In this post, I'm just going to cover two ways to make printed fabric at home with an ink jet printer to use in decorative projects that don't need to be washed.  I'll try to post other ways to print addressing some of the other variables in future blog posts.
One of the easiest ways to print on fabric is to run the fabric through your printer.  There are two ways you can do this 1) using a full size sheet label and adhering the sticky label to your fabric, or 2) using repositionable spray adhesive to adhere the fabric to card stock.

For both methods, you just want to trim up your fabric to the size of the paper { 8.5" x 11" }. 

  Now just run it through your ink jet printer.  Peel the fabric off and use it in your project.

A little about fabrics:  I have been successful using synthetic or cotton blends.  I usually use the cheapest fabric I can find, so it's light and flexible.  I have personally not tried to print on heavier fabrics like canvas, but I have seen other tutorials that have had success { like this one from The Little Brown House who successfully ran canvas through her ink jet printer }.

Here was my finished printed fabric adhered to a canvas to create some quick artwork.

And here is a another example of words I printed on fabric for a mixed media collage.

I hope you'll try this easy technique in your art work too!

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