Sometimes you need a certain color fabric with a unique print design for a project and your fabric store doesn’t have anything near what you have in mind. Don’t despair, just print your own fabric!
I have been having fun trying out fabric printing with my own homemade stamps. A while back, Melinda and I were playing around with making our own stamps with craft foam. You might want to go back and read that post. One of the items we used for backers for our stamps was a clear CD case. We found that when you took apart the case it made a perfect surface on which to attach the foam for printing. CD cases work especially well when you want to print a pattern on fabric because you can see where you have already stamped and more easily line up where you will stamp next.
I drew out a couple of different designs on two pieces of adhesive craft foam with a ballpoint pen. The pen makes the foam indent to give you unique prints with either ink or paint. I attached each piece of foam to a part of the CD case. Before stamping, I made sure my fabric was pre-washed and dried. Using a foam brush, I brushed fabric paint onto the stamp. (If you get too much paint on the stamp, your indents in the foam get filled in with paint. You still get a design, but it may not be exactly what you want. Be sure to experiment on scrap fabric before using the “real fabric” you want to print on.) Then I positioned my stamp where I wanted it and pressed it with my fingers. I had paper and wax paper under my fabric to keep the paint from bleeding through the fabric onto something I don’t want to get paint on.As you can tell, in places where I had paint brushed on the stamp more heavily, it filled in the indents on the stamp. But it gives the fabric a unique, one of a kind look because no two stampings will look the same.
After the paint dries for 24 hours, it is ready to be ironed to heat set the paint. Then the fabric is ready to be used. Now I am not quite ready to try hand printing enough fabric to make a dress (maybe later), but it’s fun to print small pieces that can be used for appliques, pillows, hair bows, accent on a garment, and so on. The possibilities are endless! If you want to transform a garment and don’t have the right color fabric to embellish the garment in the way you want, try printing your own fabric. Use your creativity to make one of a kind projects with your custom printed fabric. Who knows? You might find you really enjoy creating fabric designs and can start making a living with it!