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Thread: Printing on Fabric

  1. #1
    The pitz's Avatar
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    I have used the photo fabric for labels on the backs of my quilts, but is there any way you can print on your own fabric?
    If anyone has done this, please share how you prepared your
    fabric for the printer. Thank you much.

    The pitz

  2. #2
    Super Member shaverg's Avatar
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    The main thing is you have to treat it with bubble jet and the rinse that goes with it. Otherwise it will wash out. I use Muslin or any fabric and iron it to freezer paper, cut it to the size your printer takes, usually 8 1/2 x 11 and just run it through like any paper. I load one sheet at a time. Good luck.

  3. #3
    The pitz's Avatar
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    Thank you very much. I will try that next time.

  4. #4
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    wash your fabric first to remove the sizing...do not use any kind of fabric softener, in the wash or dryer...bubble jet is good but not necessarily manditory.
    cut freezer paper to the same size as printer paper and iron to the back of the fabric make sure your edges are secure so they do not come up and jam in the printer. let cure/dry at least 24 hours then heat set.
    i do this all the time...great fun and i've had great results.
    good luck

  5. #5
    Super Member shaverg's Avatar
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    ck, what type of printer do you have? I use to do that on quilts I didn't wash and someone told me they would wash out. I tried it sure enough even washing the fabric the colors would go immediately and the black faded a lot. I have tried HP photo and Epson, which is the same type of ink the photo companies use. Epson even washes out, even with heat setting, prewashing.

    I talked to Epson, they said they have not come up with a ink that is color fast for fabric yet.

  6. #6
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    When you wash your fabric first, rinse the soap out well in a second rinse cycle, do NOT use fabric softener :wink:

    Then pretreat it with bubble jet and let it dry(I let it line dry and then press it) before cutting and ironing it onto freezer paper.

    Cut the fabric and freezer paper 9 X 11 1/2 and then iron them together, trim up, this way you will have few/no ravels, you don't want them getting in the printer.

  7. #7
    Super Member ScrapQuilter's Avatar
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    I have been ask to take part in a cancer memory quilt in honor of my husband and was thinking of doing a picture.
    Boy this info came at just the right time.
    Thanks for posting.............

  8. #8
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    if you search the board (using the search option at the top of the page) on the subject you'll find many of our conversations and lots of useful information. ;-)

  9. #9
    The pitz's Avatar
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    Hi ladies: Boy this is all grrrrrrrrrrrrrreat info. I'm not familiar with bubble jet. Where do I get it? Thanks in advance.

    The pitz

  10. #10
    Super Member earlylace's Avatar
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    I was told that you have to use an ink jet printer, it will not work with a lazer printer. Lace

  11. #11
    Senior Member spinnergs's Avatar
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    The only thing they haven't mentioned is to use a tighter weave fabric (better quality) for vivid prints. It is best to have a printer that prints straight shot instead of folding the paper around a roller.

  12. #12
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The pitz
    I have used the photo fabric for labels on the backs of my quilts, but is there any way you can print on your own fabric?
    If anyone has done this, please share how you prepared your
    fabric for the printer. Thank you much.

    The pitz
    Yes, you can. I usually use a pale color of all cotton material and prewash it without any fabric softener or additives ... just plain ordinarily wash it. The I iron it, again with no starch, Best Press, or other. I use my Word program on my PC to do the lettering. I choose a font I like and that goes with the quilt style. If I want a design from the fabric, I can scan it into my computer and past it somewhere near the lettering.

    Having done all that I cut a piece of freezer paper and iron it onto the backside of the material [shiny side to the back of the label material. Then I trim the deges and re-iron the leading edge and put it through my INK JET printer. Once printed I let it dry a bit and then iron it again.

    I know my pictures are less than desired but hope they help ... if I did it correctly in posting them.

    the kitty cat from the material
    Name:  Attachment-30366.jpe
Views: 40
Size:  97.2 KB

    with the writing
    Name:  Attachment-30367.jpe
Views: 28
Size:  25.2 KB

  13. #13
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    I have bought the fabric sheets and printed photo's on them I got mine at Hobby Lobby but think Walmart carries them fabric sheets to. I have never tried doing it on my own fabric but after reading all this info I will have to.

  14. #14
    ReeneeD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaverg
    The main thing is you have to treat it with bubble jet and the rinse that goes with it. Otherwise it will wash out. I use Muslin or any fabric and iron it to freezer paper, cut it to the size your printer takes, usually 8 1/2 x 11 and just run it through like any paper. I load one sheet at a time. Good luck.
    where do I find bubble jet?

  15. #15
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReeneeD
    Quote Originally Posted by shaverg
    The main thing is you have to treat it with bubble jet and the rinse that goes with it. Otherwise it will wash out. I use Muslin or any fabric and iron it to freezer paper, cut it to the size your printer takes, usually 8 1/2 x 11 and just run it through like any paper. I load one sheet at a time. Good luck.
    where do I find bubble jet?
    I never used the Bubble Jet and all went well.

  16. #16
    Super Member earlylace's Avatar
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    I found bubble jet on ebay for around $20 with free shipping.

  17. #17
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    unless you are getting more than one of the big bottles, $20 is much too high a price for Bubble Jet Set.

    http://www.dharmatrading.com/html/eng/3446-AA.shtml (under $16 for the large bottle - regular formula; this page also includes a lot of information about the product and how to use it.)

    direct from the manufacturer, for about the same price. here, you will also find the special formula for HP printers. it's worth the extra $1 per bottle to get the special formula if you have an HP printer. page also includes a lot of information. you will also find fabrics here especially woven for printing. they're a bit pricey but you know they'll perform well.

    you'll also find pretreated fabrics by the yard and in packs already fused to paper for printing. i would not trust any other manufacturer of pretreated fabric. that isn't to say there aren't other good brands on the market. it's only that i, personally, haven't found any other pretreated packs that use fabric i'd consider of sufficient quality.
    http://www.softexpressions.com/softw...ns/bubjet.html

    note: Kona Prepared For Dyeing, although a fine fabric, did not give great results when i used it for printing. i got decent results, but not vivid prints. i also found it hard to fuse it completely to freezer paper, so it didn't always move smoothly through the printer. i had to toss about a third of my prints because of smudging and distortion.

    my Canon printer, which uses pigment inks, provides much nicer prints than does my HP. after washing, the difference is even more noticeable.

  18. #18
    Junior Member lucylockett's Avatar
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    Very interesting topic. Thank to all of you for sharing your experiences and knowledge. I definately will continue to watch this topic since this project is on my to do list!

  19. #19
    Super Member Oklahoma Suzie's Avatar
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    I have never done this before. I will be watching.

  20. #20

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    Hi, just wanted to tell you of my printing on cloth. We used the ribbons from my sisters funeral baskets for the designs. I printed off a picture of my sister and used it for the center of the block.A nice memo for the grand children.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Rachel's Avatar
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    I don't remember what the posting was called, but someone (I think she did this regularly) suggested adjusting your computer settings before printing pictures this way. Something makes them more vivid... sorry I don't remember the details...

  22. #22
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    I use quality best and Matt setting when I have printed on fabri! I have printed several pictures but have always used the fabric sheets color fast that I got at Hobby Lobby!

  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaverg
    ck, what type of printer do you have? I use to do that on quilts I didn't wash and someone told me they would wash out. I tried it sure enough even washing the fabric the colors would go immediately and the black faded a lot. I have tried HP photo and Epson, which is the same type of ink the photo companies use. Epson even washes out, even with heat setting, prewashing.

    I talked to Epson, they said they have not come up with a ink that is color fast for fabric yet.

    What if you only dry cleaned the quilt - would it still fade?

  24. #24
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    i have an HP inkjet 4 in one printer (5500 i think) there was a study done a few months ago about the best printers/ inks to use for fabric printing. the study found that the HP's and Epson's have the best outcomes. It is important to buy the expensive inks...the refill ones or off brands do not work, they run and fade. so when fabric printing i spend a fortune on HP ink. after printing it is important to allow the ink/fabric to 'cure' i set mine aside for at least 24 hours. then i heat set it, then i set it aside again. i do this for about a week before i finally remove the backing and run water through it. it works best if you use pfd fabrics (prepared for dyeing) but you can treat your own, with success. some colors tend to not 'hold-up' as well as others (same as any dyeing...blacks and reds are the most difficult to get good consistant results from) i worked on one project that kept fading a little bit, i finally used permenent fabric markers and colored the areas that needed some pick-me-up that worked well too.

    Quote Originally Posted by shaverg
    ck, what type of printer do you have? I use to do that on quilts I didn't wash and someone told me they would wash out. I tried it sure enough even washing the fabric the colors would go immediately and the black faded a lot. I have tried HP photo and Epson, which is the same type of ink the photo companies use. Epson even washes out, even with heat setting, prewashing.

    I talked to Epson, they said they have not come up with a ink that is color fast for fabric yet.

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