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Replacing images in a revolving lamp using transparency paper

Printing on Fabric


This tutorial for printing on fabric is based on using a product called 'Bubble Jet Set and Rinse' (which we bought on the internet) for treating your fabric, and the use of a standard home printer.

We wanted to make a cushion with a cute image, so we printed one of Crafty Jenny's free clip art images onto a piece of the treated fabric which we then stitched onto the cushion. We downloaded the clip art image of a fantail bird and edited the image in Photoshop by adding blue sky and clouds in a circle design.

Preparing your fabric for print:

1. Cut your fabric to size. The size must be small enough to fit through your printer, and must be able to lay flat in the tray you use to soak in the Bubble Jet Set and Rinse liquids. We used a pure cotton fabric (calico). It is best to use a light fabric for all colours of a detailed print to appear more clearly. Unless you are getting creative and using the colour of the fabric as a feature in your print design. E.g. Solid black ink pattern printed on red fabric.

2. Follow manufacturer's instructions by placing your cut fabric in a flat container and then covering with Bubble Jet Set. Leave to soak for at least 5 minutes to be sure the fabric has completely absorbed the liquid. Take care while working with chemicals. Work in a ventilated area and wear protective gloves.

3. Take the fabric out of the liquid and hang out to dry.

4. Once dry you need to reinforce the fabric so it runs through the printer more easily. Using either an iron on interfacing or freezer paper, iron it onto the back of your fabric until it completely adheres.

5. Place prepared sheet/s of fabric between the pages of a book and place weights on it. Leave overnight if possible. This gives you a very flat piece of fabric to run through your printer. You can try without this step but I found it makes a big improvement on performance.



Printing on your treated fabric:

6. When we practiced printing it became clear just how important good preparation of the fabric is. Take care and follow our instructions correctly or your fabric can get jammed in your printer - wasting time, ink and your prepared fabric pieces! Be gentle when putting your fabric through the printer and make sure all the edges are cut sharply and evenly so that you have no loose threads. Practice printing on plain paper first to ensure you are printing at the correct size, and when you are ready to print on the fabric, choose the best quality print option.

7. Once printed let the fabric rest for a good hour or so then remove the backing.

After printing treatment:

8. Following Bubble Jet Rinse instructions gently run your fabric through the rinse and hang up again to dry. Note you can see the excess ink coming off the print so don't run any other printed pieces through this liquid again until you have removed that excess. Use some blotting paper or something similar to soak up the excess ink so you can re-use this liquid. It is good to note that this definitely isn't a perfect science. You may get some interesting results regarding how much ink stays or washes out of the fabric. Different fabrics affect this result. This can add a unique flavour to your craft project. Our printed blue sky colour washed out a little, resulting in a more textured and realistic pretty blue sky with wisps of cloud.

After note: We tested our first finished piece by putting it through a cold machine wash and it came out perfectly - so Bubble Jet Set really does work :)


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