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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Looking Sharp-ie

Do you get ideas stuck in your head that you just can't shake?
Ideas that make perfect sense....in theory?

Well, I had purchased some iron-on transfer paper a while ago thinking that I would make tote bags with transfers of my art on them....

Turns out the ironing process, the thickness of the canvas and my patience level weren't a good combination for this project.
So, I thought I'd paint the bags instead.....
sort of like this.....

 
Sorry for all the random pen marks on this sketch. 
The concept was to paint different Dia de los Muertos inspired girls and attach a jersey flower pin to the side of her hair that could be removed to wear on other items. 
 
Like this....
 
 
 The other side would have a pocket sewn on in a matching jersey fabric.
 
 
There were several complications to this idea.  First, she took forever to paint!  Acrylic needs to be watered down quite a bit to flow over the toothy canvas, which meant lots and lots of layers to get brighter colors and full coverage.  I didn't want to ask a lot for these bags....and at this rate, they wouldn't be worth the time I was putting in :(
 
 
The second complication occurred after I gently washed the bag to test for durability and shrinkage.  I expected some....but not only did it shrink, it wrinkled very badly!  I have attempted to iron it 3 different times with underwhelming results.  The painting held up well, though....haha!
 
Here's the size difference after washing.
 
 
So I switched gears and decided to use permanent ink instead....it was definitely faster.
Sharpies are very durable and come in all kinds of great colors.
 
 
I would simply recommend spot cleaning these totes, no biggie...
 
 
Unfortunately, I should've tested the "permanent metallic ink" (not Sharpie brand) pens I've been using on my rocks on this fabric.  It seems they bleed when wet...sheesh!
So, no spot cleaning either....haha!
 
Clever fox Loves the Earth :)
 
 
So, I've got some cute totes available in the shop right now....
 
 
They will happily serve you as long as you follow an important rule (remember that 80's movie "Gremlins"?)
Don't get them wet!
.....but feeding after midnight is perfectly acceptable ;P
 
I also did a few more rocks over the weekend.
 


 
It might be time to switch over to familiar territory again...some safe hair clips or zombie plushies or something....haha!
 
What projects have you tried that didn't quite turn out as expected?
 
All my best,
Cam

17 comments:

Melanie said...

The bags are very beautyful. Thanks for all the tips. And the owl rocks are so sweet.
Liefs, Melanie

Carmen said...

Oh you do make me laff! Love your bags and their gremlinicities too :D

That fox is stunning!

NatashaMay said...

Lol! That was fun to read. I never tried to paint on fabric like this for the same reason because I thought it would take too long to paint and not worth the time. I'm so glad you experimented with sharpies. The bags look wonderful and so do the stones. The pink owl is my favorite. :)

amy said...

I pre-wash EVERYTHING. And now you know why. ;)

Yes, I experiment quite a bit. You have to factor in some misses to get to the good stuff, right?! I'm glad you finally hit on something that works for your style!

Magaly Guerrero said...

I'm impressed and mesmerized by the process. Even the ideas that didn't work out--okay, those even more. I love dedication.

And I'm in love with your painted rocks ;-)

Pia Rom said...

Haha, genial Deine süssen Taschen! Der kleine Fuchs ist mein Favorit, wobei der Schmetterling mit hinten der süssen kleinen blauen Tasche auch mein Herz gewinnt...Ja es gibt ein paar Dinge, die nicht so gut geklappt haben...Knöpfeberge auf Keilrahmen z. B. :) ...Deine bemalten Steine sind so herzig ♥ Conny
http://piaromsartjournaling.blogspot.de

WrightStuff said...

Big smile at the Gremlins comment!!

I've got a similar tote and washed a bottom corner of mine (that got yogurt spilled on it). It is so creased and it won't iron out so I have a very crinkly corner!!

They look lovely though - your ones... not mine!

Magic Love Crow said...

I love everything you created! And, you made me laugh through the process ;o) I am stuck on making something from an old ironing board right now. I have glued paper on it and it's just not working out!! Take Care ;o)

Lisa Graham said...

Well Cam, I am thinking right now that you deserve a big big pat on the back for your persistence and patience to try out the crafts you are doing the way you have. If I have to test ANYTHING...forget it. You did good girl. I LOVE your owl rock...what a sweet little thing! xoxo

Tammie Lee said...

thank you for sharing your process. i have wanted to do this too, not for sale but for gifts.

i am told the sharpie paint markers are acrylic paint.

your bags and rocks turned out wonderful.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

Oh...oh...oh...I LOVE the bags, Cameron! They are beautiful! Maybe you need to wash the bags first. But probably just the spot clean is better! I rarely ever wash a tote bag! But I love your art and that butterfly is amazing! WOW!!!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I marked a couple as favs...that's my trouble, I can never decide which one I like best! Hugs!

pinkglitterfae said...

oh dear, putting my girls on canvas bags was one of the things on my list of ideas too, lol! I planned it out in my head, thinking I can buy those iron transfer thingys, but now it looks like I will scrap that. Ok, there must be a way to get our art on those bags safely. Don't give up!
love the sharpie ones too, super colorful. See we have to keep trying things, it makes life fun. Lovin' the cute critters on the rocks too. You have been busy old friend!
xoxo
betty

Kristin said...

Ooooh, they are so cute! But I totally get it - the pillows I paint on canvas material also take so long to paint that yes, you would have to charge a lot to make it worth it - but the sharpies - now that's a great idea.
AND you have the little owl! I have to see if anyone beat me to the pink one :) xoxo

Treehugger_31 said...

The bags are beautiful! So colorful! I'm a messy girl, so my totes get washed frequently...otherwise I'd be first in line for one of yours! :)

I have lots of little sewing projects that didn't go the way I wanted...at first. It took some time...and internet searching for help...but I finally came through! Lol.

Jennifer said...

Hey Cam! How prettttyyyy! What creative adventures you've been up to Madam. I'm jumping right back in with both feet. So excited!

Manon Visser said...

Lol I know that whole process so well. I wash things before hand now because I found out that some chemicals to stiffen the fabric also don't help transfers to stay in the right place. What about using alcohol based markers they seem to hold out a bit longer in the wash. Lovely work Cam and it is a shame we see so little of you.
ManonX

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