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Stamping on Fabric Tutorial – Quick & Easy!
By Lenna Andrews

Stamping on fabric is not difficult to do, and with a little practice and the proper supplies, your impressions will last. By “the proper supplies” I’m referring to inks and paints formulated to be heat set for permanency on fabric. A “permanent” ink you might have for metal or paper is not the same kind of ink as one that has been designed to become permanent on fabric after heat setting. You will find greater success stamping fabric when armed with the “right stuff” designed for fabric - Make sure your fabric is pre-washed! In my tutorial I will use Tsukineko ‘Fabrico’ ink pads (VersaCraft) and Jacquard’s Lumiere paint – perfect choices for fabric stamping! 

Ink Pads are just the right thing to use for a more detailed rubber stamp image on fabric. Lightly tap your stamp onto the ink pad until it has a good coverage of ink. If the stamp is a large one, you may want to flip the stamp so the rubber is facing up, and bring the inkpad to the stamp. When printing your image you’ll want to press firmly. Always practice your first impression or two on a similar piece of scrap fabric - or a piece of scrap paper.
 Important: Re-ink your stamp for each impression. Smooth fabrics without a lot of texture will work the best/easiest. Clean up with inks is a breeze! Wipe the excess ink off the stamp with an old towel and spritz any remaining ink off with water if needed. The sample on muslin below shows rubber stamps by Stamper’s Anonymous stamped with Fabrico/VersaCraft ink on the left, as well as one stamp (saying) on the right stamped with indigo Lumiere paint. The ferns and leaves printed on the right were also painted with Lumiere paint; citrine and indigo.

Paint is wonderful for bolder design stamps, hand carved stamps, or nature prints. Shake the jar of paint, and use a foam brush or cosmetic sponge to tap or smooth the paint on, depending on the look you want. Test first; you may find you want more or less paint. After several tests you will be ready to print on your chosen fabric. When nature printing, you will place a blank piece of plain paper over the top of your leaf or fern so you can fully press the nature item into your fabric. Use water to clean up your brushes & sponges. The nature items can be used a few times before they will have to be thrown away. 

Heat Setting is the most important thing you can do to preserve your fabric stamping! Your stamping must be completely dry first and a hot, dry iron is required; so heat yours up – no water!  You will need to iron for about 2 minutes on each area   that’s been stamped, using a press cloth or piece of plain muslin to cover the stamping if you like.  For best results, iron on BOTH sides of the fabric and let the fabric 'set' for a week or two before washing it. This is very important to help prevent fading of the ink or paint. You’ll find that flat, tightly woven fabrics will yield the best results when fabric stamping.  A light colored pillow case or flat cotton fabric is the best way to start fabric stamping; the easiest. Also, 100% cotton or silk (natural fabrics) will hold fabric inks or paints better than a cotton-poly blend.
Also, you don’t have to print/stamp just on plain muslin – see below. I placed the fern on freezer paper, and sponged Bright Gold Lumiere on one side only. Then I picked the fern up and placed it on the printed green fabric, putting a piece of scrap paper on top of it and pressing all over the fern. When I removed the scrap paper and peeled the fern back . . . . .

If you would like to try stamping on fabric you'll need some basic supplies.  Click here to see all of our rubberstamps, here for Lumiere paint, and here to see Tsukineko's Fabrico/Versacraft inkpads.

Click here to see the online classes Lenna teaches here at Joggles

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