Friday, July 6, 2012

EtsyLabs Munich Workshop: Printing on Fabric

Last night, I attended a fabric printing workshop in Munich sponsored by Etsy Deutschland. The group was given some stencil designs by Steffie Brocoli - check out her blog and beautiful shop on Etsy hello possum. Or you could, like I did, design and make your own stencils.

As always, I seemed to work much slower than everyone else, really deliberating over my designs and spending ages cutting them out and re-doing them. But by the end of the night I did manage to get this canvas tote printed with a leaf design based on one of the drawings from my sketchbook.

Stencilling designs onto fabric is really easy. You'll need fabric paint, a sponge, piece of clear acetate or paper, cutting knife, a cutting mat (or thick piece of card) and your chosen fabric to print on (lighter colour is best).

Here's what you do:

1. Cut your design out either on a piece of paper or better still a sheet of acetate (which you can then use again) to create your stencil.

2. Place the stencil onto your chosen piece of fabric (e.g. tote bag, T-shirt, baby onesie etc.), insert a piece of card behind the fabric (i.e. inside the bag or T-shirt) to provide rigidity and fix the stencil in place with some masking tape to stop it slipping around.

3. Using fabric paint and either a flat stipple brush or a sponge, dab on the paint through the stencil onto the fabric. Don't apply too much paint at once and don't brush the paint on as this will result in the paint seeping under the stencil and the design not having very clean edges.

4. Carefully peel off the stencil and hang the fabric up to dry.

5. Once dry, you can add more details with another stencil, for example in another colour, and when you are happy with it iron on a medium heat, no steam (with an old rag between the painted fabric and the iron) to fix the colour.

I'm planning on using this technique to personalise some plain baby onesies and bibs for our baby due later this year. It's also a great way to make unique teatowels and tote bags which make thoughtful and useful gifts.

Here are some more pictures from the evening.



Thank you Charlotte & Tabea for organising!

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