Leggi questo post in: Italiano
Are you freezer paper addicted? Yeah, I am too.
I use freezer paper ALL the time to stencil on clothing, costumes and all other fabric items. It’s a really simple way to paint designs onto fabric, even if you are far from being an artist. I really love how perfectly crisp and clean the lines come out with this technique. If you have never tried it, check out this tutorial on how to freezer paper stencil designs on fabric. You’ll see– it’s super addictive!
And now freezer paper stenciling has gotten even easier, thanks to something that I’ve recently discovered:
Printable freezer paper sheets*! This means that you don’t even have to trace onto the paper, because you can now use your home printer to print onto it! Absolutely perfect!
These sheets* are the same freezer paper you’ve always used, with a paper side on the top and a shiny side on the bottom. However, they are conveniently US Letter sized so that you can just pop them right into your ink jet printer to transfer your favorite designs, all ready for cutting out and applying!
How do they work? And what if you have a laser printer that you use with A4 size paper? No problem! Keep on reading to find out how to print on freezer paper with a laser printer with whatever size paper you want!
How to use printable freezer paper
If you know how to print on a regular piece of paper, then you know how to print on freezer paper. If you have an ink jet printer that you usually use with letter-size paper, just stick the freezer paper sheet in the printer, shiny side down, and print whatever image you want! Done!
What if I usually use A4 paper?
Not a problem! I usually do, too! Just change the size in the printing options box (yeah, mine’s in Italian because I live in Italy, but I’m sure you can figure it out in your own language!) and adjust the clips that hold the paper in the printer’s tray so that they fit correctly around the Letter-sized sheets. Done! Just don’t forget to change the options back when you go back to printing A4 paper.
What if I have a laser printer, not an ink jet?
The thing that makes freezer paper so fantastic for sewing is that you can fuse the shiny side temporarily to the fabric. Common sense tells us that things that can be fused shouldn’t get near heat when you don’t want to fuse them. And laser printers get HOT inside. I haven’t tried putting freezer paper through my laser printer without any protection, because a total disaster happened when I fed a sheet of Heat’n Bond Lite* iron-on adhesive through it. (You can read all about it, plus my great trick to get around this problem, here.)
Luckily, this nasty experience gave me a great idea of how to print on freezer paper with a laser printer, without ruining your printer. All it takes is…
…scissors, tape and a sheet of regular printer paper! Just like I did with Heat’n Bond, trim the edges of your printable freezer paper so that it’ll fit on regular printer paper with about 1 cm margin all around. (I used a sheet of A4 paper, so I only had to trim one long side. I chose red paper to show the difference between the two papers more easily.) Center it on the printer paper, shiny side down, then tape down all edges, making sure that both the freezer paper and the tape are perfectly flat and without any folds or wrinkles.
Incidentally, you can also do this with regular freezer paper in a rolls*, too, however it may be harder to get it to lie perfectly flat.
Print on it as usual, and that’s it!
Then get out your usual freezer paper stencil tools, and get to work! (Read more detailed instructions on freezer paper stenciling here.)
In this case, I’m embellishing a prototype of what I’m currently calling the “One-Square Tote”, a tutorial I am getting ready for the blog, with one of the designs from my upcoming “Speech Bubble” appliqué pack, which will be available soon!
Stenciling with your printed design
First, if you taped the freezer paper to a regular sheet of printer paper, cut off the taped margins (or peel off the tape if it gets too close to the design) to liberate the sheet of freezer paper.
Then, as usual, use an Xacto knife* (or regular scissors for larger parts) on a small cutting mat* to remove inside parts that will get discarded. Be careful not to cut into any parts that you DO need!
Iron the freezer paper, shiny side down, onto the fabric where you want it, to stick it on. I used a ruler to make sure that I lined up the letters straight.
When using freezer paper with a multi-part design, I suggest first ironing the largest part (in this case, the speech bubble), and then positioning other pieces, largest to smallest. I use the tip of my iron to quickly fuse just a part of each letter at a time. Then, once all letters are in place, I iron them all properly.
Paint over the design with fabric paint. I like to give two coats and then let it dry overnight. Then peel off the freezer paper and heat set the paint by ironing over it (with an ironing cloth over the paint) for 5 minutes, or however your brand of fabric paint instructs you to do. Always follow the instructions of the products you are using!
And you are done! It’s so easy to freezer paper stencil when you don’t even have to do any of the drawing yourself! And now that it’s even possible to print on freezer paper with a laser printer, not just ink jet, you have no excuses not to try this super fun decorating technique!
If you love freezer paper stenciling, check out this adorable pencil-shaped pencil case FREE pattern with a fun freezer paper stencil detail to make it all the more realistic!
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