2/09/2011

How to make your own fabric

I found this recipe on the internet. By doing some research I found the person who came up with the recipe (not where I found it), queenofdiy here.

Do you want to make your own fabric? You can use it for all kinds of things! Personalized pillows, beanbags or make appliques for a t-shirt. I will show you how! Warning: There a lot of photos but it is not hard. In fact I did this in just 60 minutes, maybe less if you aren't taking pictures ;)

For this tutorial I made a Louis L'Amour (my brother loves him) applique for my new nephew was just born.


The stuff needed:
Inkjet printer (NOT a laser one)
Washing soda
Alum (found in the spice section)
liquid fabric softener
freezer paper
cotton fabric (The size of regular printer paper, 8 ½ x 11)
onesie
Optional: Interfacing



First so your image won't bleed when washed you need to make (or buy) bubble jet.
Mix 2 tablespoons of Alum (found in the spice section of your grocery store)
2 1/2 teaspoons of Washing Soda (found in the laundry section)
1/2 teaspoon of liquid fabric softener.
1 Cup hot water
Mix it in a big bowl (2-3 quart size) it will foam when you add the water. Stir.
After a few minutes the foam will disappear. Soak your 100% white cotton fabric in your solution for 15 minutes. Squeeze out all the liquid in the same bowl (you can use it again). Then squeeze out again and dry, either by air or in the dyer.


Now get your freshly dried cotton fabric and iron it smooth (it will have a little residue like feel to it, thats fine).
Then measure freezer paper to a regular piece of paper and cut to fit. Your fabric should already be about this size.


Lay your freezer paper, shiny side down, on top of your fabric. Align as best you can.


Next iron it together. The freezer paper will act as a stiffener and make it so your fabric will feed through the printer. Ironing makes it stick together really well. Try to not make any bubbles or wrinkles. Iron it one more time just to make sure it is together. Cut any over hang and make it as even on the edges as possible.


It should be like one piece of paper when done.



Get your image ready. I like to use the print with preview option. Practice with regular paper first, to make sure your printer is on all the right settings and so you can see how to line up your fabric.


Load your paper into your printer. Make sure the fabric is facing where the printer will print. You don't want to print your image on the freezer paper. Press the print button. You might need to watch it and help keep it straight, mine was curling at first so I put my hand lightly on the paper to help it be flat.


Here it is! Your very own unique fabric! I didn't use the proper setting the first time so I sent it through again ;)

*EDIT* Once your image is on the fabric, wait 20 minutes*(if you are using generic ink cartridges, leave the print overnight). Remove Freezer Paper. Rinse by putting some cold water and a little fabric softener in a bowl, put the fabric straight in and give it a quick swish. At this point, you will lose some of the color. Wring out the excess liquid and air dry.

When dry continue with the following steps:

Next peel, cut and pin. The freezer paper makes it peel really easy. Cut it to the size you want, I just cut it around the image. Pin it to where you want it on your shirt (or whatever you are doing with it). If you are pinning it to something knit like me be sure not to stretch it (the shirt).


This is where the optional interfacing comes in. I pinned mine to the shirt but I was afraid it would stretch to much on the back so I ironed interfacing on the inside (you could do it on the back of your image instead), use the pins as a guide.


Last step, sew! I was careful to make sure I didn't stretch anything or it would end up wavy. At each corner stop, lift the pressure foot with the needle down and resume after turning it.


Here it is your cute shirt all finished!!!!
This could be used for pictures if you are making a quilt, a personalized soft book and even fabric blocks with family pictures on them! The possibilities are endless!

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