printing on fabric… or not

I’m working on finishing my fabric journal and am finally getting to the final stages of putting it all together.
cover1
One of the last steps is to make the little labels that I wanted to put on each page that included a little description of what each page was about and how I made it. My intention is to attach the label for each page on the back of the previous page, so that when the pages are open you can read it right there facing it.
print4
However, it has not gone so well! I wanted to print from the computer onto fabric, which is something I have done before. See the blue fabric in this wallhanging with the black ‘smudges’ on it: I ‘painted’ the splotches using my computer’s Paint program and printed it onto the blue fabric which had been backed with freezer paper. It fed through the printer and printed perfectly.
print5
This time it didn’t go so well. Using Word, I typed the text for each label into a table so all labels would be the same size. I ironed the freezer paper to the back of some linen fabric, but it just didn’t feed through very well. It started to print but then it stopped and bunched up and jammed the printer.
print1
So, I thought the linen itself wasn’t conducive to being picked up by the printer’s rollers. I then cut some plain cotton and ironed the freezer paper to it – it didn’t work either.
print2
Maybe, I needed more freezer paper to make it firmer, so I ironed 2 more pieces onto the back ( this was a type of freezer paper that was thinner or finer than the first piece I used, so I figured two layers of it would equate to one of the other). It didn’t work either.
print3
I’m thinking that the previous time when I had success with printing, I must have been using a different printer. We have had this current printer about 2 years, so maybe the older printer was just better at feeding through?
I decided to try and use the Transfer Artists Paper, which I have also used with success before, as shown here, but to use that I needed to reverse image the text so when it is ironed onto the fabric the words are back the right way. But when I tried to work out how to do that in my version of Word, it proved too difficult and required more patience than I had!

So now I am considering writing it by hand on the freezer paper-backed cotton with a fabric pen, which will take such a long time. Phooey! Any hints?

2 thoughts on “printing on fabric… or not

  1. Karen , Helen S used the puchased printable fabric and it worked I have used that as well and worked well, Meryl.

  2. Love your cover Karen but can’t offer much help re the printing as you’ve done everything I would have suggested! lol Perhaps it IS the brand of printer. It’s amazing what one of my Brother printers would print on AND would feed through! I once printed onto handmade paper and then machined it to fabric. Perhaps that might work? I’ve got some A5 handmade paper I’m happy to share with you if you want to have a go? Let me know! :)

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