Saturday, April 4, 2015

Printing on Fabric - Learning from Mary Corbett

What a debt we owe Mary Corbet for all the help we get from her blog.  This week she wrote about printing on fabric using freezer paper to give the fabric substance for feeding through the printer.  I had used commercially prepared fabric for my two BMX quilts but from now on my fabric choice is practically unlimited, using Mary's method.

So my Good Friday morning was spent on a Treasure Hunt for a small roll of freezer paper that I knew was lurking somewhere around the house.  Found it.

I had a project in mind since seeing the Victorian Ladies designs by Sentimental Stitches.   For me the trouble was that the ladies were 17" tall.  I would find that too large for the kind of quilts that I make.  The other trouble was that with the digital download of the pattern each lady came in three parts which you were intended to print and tape together before transferring your pattern to your fabric.

But I wanted to follow Mary's instructions which involved preparing an A4 size piece of fabric to fit the computer tray.

So.... It was a case of open up Photoshop, cut and paste the three pieces together to make the lady, then crop this image , cutting off the excess background. You can see the lines where I have made the join.

Over to Word and insert this into a blank page, adjusting the size to fill most of the page.  Print a test page on paper  to check the size.

I put my freezer paper with fabric attached into the printer tray, which with my printer is a  shallow drawer under the printer and the printer picked it up and printed it perfectly first try.  That is quite unusual in my life !  As I had been using a closely woven quilting fabric I didn't feel the need to use sticky tape around the edges.  The freezer paper was well adhered then trimmed to A4 size using the rotary cutter and this gave sharp edges which were of no trouble to the printer.

To embroider it I am using Madeira Pure Silk in a dark brown which I an finding so beautifully easy to thread into the needle. And I am happy with the background fabric - the pattern has a Victorian feel to it.

I have read many sets of instructions for printing on fabric over the last two or three years but this is the first time, when reading Mary Corbett's explanations, that I felt confident enough to try it for myself.  Now I have so many quilts in mind using this technique   that I will never have enough time to make them all.

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