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Sewing on fabric treated with Inkaid or Digital Grounds

Posted on April 23, 2014

If you have ever printed images onto fabric using Inkaid or Digital Grounds, then no doubt you’ve discovered that once fabric is treated with any of these products it becomes quite stiff to rigid depending on the product type that you use. Sometimes this isn’t a problem if you’re going to sew the fabric using a sewing machine, however it can be a little tough on the fingers if you want to add some hand embroidery or embellishment.

There is a way however, that you can pre-coat fabric with Inkaid or Digital Grounds that will take away a little to a lot of the pain when machine and hand sewing, and also give you an exceptional printed image.

I sometimes like to print my images on fabrics such as silks, faux silks, and other light-weight fabrics. Working with these types of fabric can be challenging because they are lightweight and can’t absorb too much ink, often resulting in poor image quality.

For instance, in this example I was challenged to print an image onto a piece of poly-silk which had a lovely sheen and surface texture. Printing directly onto untreated fabric using my usual printer settings which is a photo setting, resulted in a seriously blurry image due to the ink bleeding badly.

Quilting on fabric treated with Inkaid or Digital Grounds

And even when using the standard printer setting, there was still a lot of ink bleed.

Quilting on fabric treated with Inkaid or Digital Grounds

But after a few experiments using Inkaid I finally managed to get an excellent print. I think you can agree that the difference in image quality is exceptional.

Quilting on fabric treated with Inkaid or Digital Grounds

It also left the fabric quite soft which was a bonus. (more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Printing on Fabric
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Printing on Fabric: Bubble Jetset vs Inkaid/Digital Grounds

Posted on April 16, 2014

So you want to print on fabric but are confused by some of the products that are available?

Don’t feel bad, you’re not alone. One of the most common questions I get asked, is to explain the difference between the liquid pre-treatments that can be used when printing on fabric using an inkjet printer.

Bubble Jetset 2000 v Inkaid & Digital Grounds

In my previous post “Recommended products for printing on fabric using an inkjet printer“, I listed some of the products that you can use when printing on fabric which also includes several liquid products that can be used to pre-treat your fabric prior to printing, namely Bubble Jetset, Bubble Jetset Rinse, Inkaid and Digital Grounds.

Let’s have a look at how they differ. (more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Printing on Fabric
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Recommended products for printing on fabric using an inkjet printer

Posted on April 10, 2014

As I mentioned in a previous post, I print on fabric using my inkjet printer using various different techniques, and I also use various different products to achieve the results I’m looking for. Let’s have a look at the products that I use. (Note that the links in this article will refer you directly to the product supplier where I get my supplies from.)

Printer

PrinterFor printing on fabric I use a dedicated printer which is an Epson WorkForce 1100 Wide-Format Color Inkjet Printer. I’ve considered upgrading to a newer model, but this particular printer (after a few initial problems) is still going strong after quite a few years and I have no reason to retire it just yet. This printer is a wide format so I can print up to 13″ wide by 44″ long, and it uses pigment inks which means I can make fabric prints that are permanent and washable.

With this printer I can print on plain fabric, but it also has an “envelope setting” which allows thicker paper to be fed through and I use this setting to print on textured fabric such as fabric paper up to about 1/4″ thick without any problems although I don’t recommend you try this at home unless you know what you’re doing.

This model printer has been discontinued by Epson however I think you can still pick them up used or refurbished here on Amazon, or you can check the Epson website for the latest alternative model.

You can also find additional information about printers here on the Inked Cloth website.

Fabric

For general purpose fabric prints I use EQ Printables Inkjet Fabric Sheets which are commercial fabric sheets that are pre-treated to ensure the prints are washable. I like using this fabric because I get a consistent and high quality fabric print every time. You can purchase these in standard size sheets or in a convenient roll which is what I use. You can find a fabric comparison test here on the Inked Cloth website that demonstrates the difference using different types of fabric including EQ Printables.

(more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Printing on Fabric
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How to Print on fabric using an inkjet printer

Posted on April 8, 2014

If you love to print on fabric using an inkjet printer as much as I do, then you know just how fun and creative it can be. And it’s easy to do using technology that everyone has convenient access to, starting with the simple home inkjet printer.

Printing on fabric is my personal favorite method of transferring images to fabric and I use my images in lots of different ways:

Memory Quilts – one of my absolute favorite ways to use images.

Photolicious Art Quilt Pattern

Canvas Art

Printing on Fabric - Photo Art: Remembering Summer

(more…)

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Exploring Photoshop: Designing Repeat Patterns

Posted on March 19, 2014

Designing your own fabric patterns has never been easier with all the amazing tools that we have at our disposal these days. And making a repeat pattern design is one of the most common ways to create designs. Although there are special programs that make this task very easy indeed like Adobe Illustrator (which is also very expensive), you can make repeating designs quite easily using Photoshop Elements or Photoshop.

In Photoshop and Photoshop Elements you can of course make repeat patterns using several different methods. This one is my personal favorite.

Photoshop Elements Tutorial: Designing Repeat Patterns

So let’s get started …

(more…)

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Categories: **New**, Digital Art, Tutorials, Tutorials: Digital Art
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The power of Pinterest for your business

Posted on March 4, 2014

Don’t you just love Pinterest? I do! I love it for both for casual browsing as well as for business and I have to admit that I probably spend a tad more time on there than I should. I’ve mentioned before that Pinterest has been good for my business, and it’s improving every day.

For instance, I was adding some pins to one of my boards today and noticed these pins so thought I would share.

What’s interesting about this particular pin is that it’s been shared 3,241 times and it’s been liked 241 times. I didn’t make that up. And I think that’s amazing! Who knew so many people needed a way to manage their cords?

The power of Pinterest for your business

However, that was just pin shares from my Pinterest board. In total this article has been shared 7,640 times.

The power of Pinterest for your business

And this pin for a fabric bin tutorial has been shared from my Pinterest board 2717 times and liked 175 times. (more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Odds and Ends
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WordPress for Artists

Posted on February 23, 2014

Learn how to install and setup your own WordPress website – for free!

For the last several years I’ve run an online class showing other artists how to create their own WordPress website and I’m asked constantly if I’m going to run it again this year. Unfortunately due to other projects and commitments this year I won’t have time.

However …

What I have done is put together a free set of basic tutorials showing you how to install and setup your own WordPress website and you can find it all here on the WordPress for Artists website.

I hope you find this a useful resource for getting your WordPress website up and running, and of course if you’re not up for the challenge of setting up your own website, I still offer custom WordPress installation and maintenance.

Wordpress for Artists

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Fabric photo frames, online classes and other things

Posted on February 14, 2014

I just happened to look up and discovered it’s Friday already! Oh my goodness! So what have I been doing this week to make it disappear so quickly?

Fabric Photo Frames

Firstly I’ve been trying to finish samples for some new patterns that I’m working on, in particular this pattern for fabric photo frames. I love making fabric frames for my photos; it’s such a creative way to display photos that you cherish and it’s also a great way to coordinate your photos to your frames because you can use any type and color of fabric. I have a few more design samples to finish, but hopefully this pattern will be ready for publication within the next week or so. In the meantime, here are a few samples that I’ve finished.

I’ve added some embellishments to this frame which I think is perfectly suited for an old black and white photo of my grandparents.

Fabric Photo Frame

I absolutely love the color of this fabric and it looks great with this photo art print. (more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Digital Art, Fabric and Thread, Printing on Fabric
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How to make quick and easy fabric trays

Posted on February 6, 2014

As I was cleaning up the sewing room the other day I realized that most of the mess on the sewing table was made up of small piles of “works in progress”. Normally I keep all the bits and pieces for my projects together in plastic bags, and although this is a convenient way to store things I find it quite uninspiring to see my precious work jammed into a plastic bag.

I’ve been meaning for ages to make some fabric storage boxes or trays but most patterns are quite time consuming and then I remembered seeing this tutorial for quick and easy fabric trays. So I adjusted the pattern slightly so that I could use some of my injured prints, and in only a few hours I had sewn a small collection of beautiful fabric trays.

How to make a fabric tray

If you want to make your own fabric trays using a printed image or other type of focus fabric, here’s how to do it: (more…)

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Categories: **New**, Blog, Tutorials, Tutorials: Fabric and Thread
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Exploring Photoshop: How to make textured edges for your photos

Posted on February 5, 2014

Exploring Photoshop: How to make textured edges for photosTextured and decorative framed edges for your photos, can really set the mood and turn your photos and images into something memorable, don’t you think?

There are lots of different ways to add textured edges to your photos using photoshop or photoshop elements, but the easiest way I’ve found is to make a separate image and use it as an overlay mask. Using this technique you can accumulate a very nice library of textured edges that you can use over and over on your other photos as well.

This tutorial demonstrates the basics of making this type of textured edge using the basic round brush that can be found in the brush library, and once you know how to do it you can go crazy using other different types of brushes.

(more…)

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Categories: **New**, Digital Art, Tutorials, Tutorials: Digital Art
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