Sunday, 24 November 2013

How to print your own quilt label

Ever wanted to print your own quilt label?  Well here's how.

1.   Design a label.  You can do this in word or in a paint, design or graphics program.  I designed mine in Touchdraw, the app for iPad.



2.   Cut one piece of freezer paper to the same size as the paper you run through your printer, be it A4, US letter sized or whatever.

3.   Fuse that to a piece of fabric using a hot iron.  The purpose of the freezer paper is to stabilise the fabric so it will run through the printer - the ink is printed onto the fabric, not onto the freezer paper.

4.   Place the fabric / freezer paper in the printer.  At this stage, I find it helps to hold the two bottom corners of the sheet down in the printer so that it feeds evenly through as it can get caught at a funny angle.

5.   Print the design at whatever scale you need to produce the sized label you are looking for.  Mine was printed at 50%.

6.   Remove the fabric from the freezer paper by peeling it off.  Trim 1/2" away from the edges of the design then press those edges under at the same time pressing the whole design to fix the ink.


7.   Sew to your quilt by hand or machine.

NB: this printing will withstand a number of washes but for a really permanent solution, first pre-treat the fabric using Bubble Jet Set 2000.

NB: Please road test with your own ink and printer as one commenter found that her ink ran when washed and another found that trying to print on fabric caused a major internal snarl up with her printer.


15 comments:

  1. For the, err, idiots amongst us, does it go freezer paper side up or down? Or is the freezer paper just there to stabilise at the back while you print?

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    1. Thanks for asking this! I also haven't tried this, and it's not obvious to me whether the freezer paper is the thing receiving the ink or used as backing for the fabric.

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  2. I have tried this on two occasions only to create huge, messy jams in the printer. I wonder if my printer is just not the right type?

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  3. Thanks for this. I would like to try my own!

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  4. How weird is this, I had written a near identical post about 2 months back but hadn't got round to publishing it yet because I hadn't taken the photos! Think I might wait a bit longer ;) We missed you at the meeting yesterday BTW, hope you all had a fun day.

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  5. Are you using an ink-jet or laser printer? I've only got a laser, and don't dare put anything like freezer paper through it... would love to try this if anyone can confirm it's not just for ink-jets.

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  6. I did this a while ago, but the colour ran the second it came into contact with water. Hmmm...I wonder what I did or didn't do! I have since bought pre-treated cotton and it works a treat!

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  7. Wish I could tell you that this label-making method works for me, but it doesn't. Yes, I can design a level on my computer (using Pages software on my MacBook), but printing with freezer paper backing doesn't work. Honestly, I ruined a printer trying this. Fabric threads got wrapped around the roller. We had to buy a new printer- an expensive mistake. I'm sharing just to give everyone a word if caution about this. But truly, I'm glad it works for you!

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    1. Would pinking the edges, even if they were trimmed later, work better as it relates to the threads?

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  8. Very interesting. Have always wondered how this was done, never tried it!

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  9. I also have an inkjet printer question. I know that the ink bleeds with the slightest moisture on paper. Does simply ironing really set the ink? Laser printers, while printing in water-proof ink, are very expensive to own personally, with most people not having them in their homes. But, I believe most copy stores use laser printers. Problem: They, most likely, will not let you put anything but standard paper through their expensive machines! I'm unfamiliar with Bubble Jet Set 2000. Has anyone used this?

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