Interesting tidbits I learnt from the internet ...
Foiling: with Misty Fuse .. so fine , and you can paint or otherwise color it before foiling as well. You can also just use the sharp side of your iron to get little 'stripes' of foil.
Pitt Pens: are India ink pens and don’t dry out so fast as the pigma pens..also the tips seem more indestructible....the ink so far has passed the soak it in water to see if it runs test...they also come in a wide range of tips and colors.
If you have some extraneous paint stick paint on your cloth, you can use a piece of masking tape to get most of it off if it is fresh .. You can also use the slick side of freezer paper as a palette. Load some color on it (mix colors if you want) and then dab the stencil brush in the paint
Sign with free motion stitching. Straight, not satin stitching. .do it fairly large - about 1" high, which makes it easier. Draw top and bottom horizontal lines with painter’s tape, as a guide .. Thicker thread shows up better if you're looking for contrast. Print out your words in strips if you need to have everything spaced exactly so that you can use the strips as guides.
The best way to raise the table ( if it has 4 legs) is to go to the hardware store and get 4 lengths of PVC pipe......measure the length of the legs and add 6 inches (or however high you want the table) and slide the pipes up over the legs. Be certain that you purchase PVC pipe that is just a little bit bigger in circumference so that it will slide up over the legs. When you are finished..just slide the PVC pipe off the legs and resume as normal .. Go to your local hardware store get 4 pc of pvc pipe about 2 " SO IT WILL GO AROUND YOUR TABLE LEGS and 10 - 12 " so it will fit YOU Then get 4 caps so the cut edge will not hurt your floor with help get them on one end then the other your done and take off when not in use WORKS SO WELL and so budget friendly
Make all test blocks out of Christmas fabric. Then when I need a quick gift, they zip together for a scrappy sampler.
You can order black canvas or already stretched black canvases from Dick Blick. The already stretched canvases are not gallery wrapped. I have purchased white stretched gallery wrapped canvases and painted them black. I went to Lowe's and had them mix flat black wall paint for me. My regular framer was even impressed with how great my fiber pieces looked mounted on the black canvas. ..But, house paint on canvas is not archival. It will eventually come off. Raw canvas needs to be primed for oil paint. Acrylic paints act as a ground instead of gesso; there is acrylic gesso. When making fine art, destined to hang in a gallery, the archival quality of the substances used is imperative.
A facing for the edge of my quilts, just for a different look from a binding. Cut a two inch strip and sew it to the front, right sides together. Then turn and iron it and iron the edge so it looks nice and clean and iron the facing to the back. Iron under a 1/2" fold on the facing so when I turn it to the back, there's not a raw edge. Then , hand stitch it down on the back. Do two sides even with the quilt edges, and on the other 2 sides, I make the facing an inch or so longer so I can fold it in and make it neat when I turn it to the back. .. Once I have turned the facing to the back, I run a line of machine stitching just 1/8" to the outside of the seam line, taking in the facing and quilt layers in that seam allowance area - press it and then turn the raw edge of the facing under and then slip stitch down.
Irregular shaped top: during construction it is possible to build in serious stiffening and then at the level below the lowest point on the shaping attach a regular rod sleeve. This needs to be planned in advance, and is not something you can do at the last minute when you find you have ended up with something 'irregular'. .. attach Velcro at intervals along the shaping, and then cut a board (marine ply or heavy duty foam core) shaped similarly, but a bit smaller than the outer edge of the quilt-- drill two or more holes to slip over screws or picture hooks, and on this board place Velcro all round the edge to correspond with the Velcro on the quilt's edge. When the board is properly placed, press the quilt onto it; adjust for straight drape .. If you are wanting sticky-out bits down the side of the quilt, these Too need to be planned for and coped with during the construction phase Rather than attach another sleeve and rod partway down. Hold a pattern steady while tracing and cutting it by filling film containers with sand and using them as pattern weights. Easy baby rag quilt: cut squares of muslin and leftover material into 7" squares. Pair them up with wrong sides together and stitch them any way you want - this will be the quilting of this quilt. Sew them on the diagonal, on the perpendicular going through the center, a square 2" in from the center, a heart, you name it. Once these are done, pair them up with fabric sides together (which is the top/muslin is the back) and sew together using a 1/2" seam. Sew two pairs to another pair and you have a foursome. Make 12. Lay them out 3 x 4 and sew those together. All the seam allowances will be on the front. Now clip all the edges with scissors every 1/4" on all edges, wash you quilt twice and you're done. The owner of Superior Threads about all things thread, said that the restriction against using polyester threads with cotton was just an old wives tale--like the one that says we should only make quilts with cotton fabrics or that the only TRUE quilts are all hand made. He said that they had done extensive testing and found absolutely no evidence that polyester threads were any more likely than cotton to tear the fabric. The only threads any warnings about are those gorgeous rayons, which evidently lose their color over time, and weaken with age.
Clean brushes after acrylic paint dries It is expensive to buy the acrylic cleaner... a wonderful, inexpensive substitute: Lysol pine scent cleaner. It actually emulsifies the paint and the brushes come out like new. It also gets the dreaded acrylic out of clothes very nicely and doesn't harm the material.
Printer’s option... prints, and then click on PROPERTIES. Choose how many pages it will print on, from 2 to 16. Use this for making posters for speaking engagements so that people in the back row can see.
Dyed towels or any sheet type paper product can be turned into fabric-like material quite simply. All you need is a water base glue such as white craft glue or carpenter's glue or some of the Aleene's glues, etc. I like to use the ones that do not dissolve after drying. That way your finished item can be washable if you want.
Dilute the glue 4/1 that is 4 parts water for 1 part glue. It will look like diluted milk or rice water. This measurement can be altered to suit also as glues are quite variable in consistency but it needs to be very watery not thick in any way.
Paint this watered down glue onto a light piece of cotton fabric placed in the bottom of a tray of suitable size and which is waterproof. Continue adding watered down glue until the fabric is totally drenched.
Let this wet glued fabric sit for several minutes so that the watered down glue can really soak into the fibers of the cotton. It needs to remain looking really drenched with the watered down glue. Add more glue water if needed. Some of the watery glue can even be puddling out of the fabric. Then lay the desired piece of paper (in this case the colored paper towel) onto the surface of the wet fabric. Use a brush or your fingers to press the paper into complete contact with the soggy wet glue soaked fabric. You want no air bubbles between the paper and the fabric. The paper will soak up lots of the watery glue. I find the bristles of a stiff craft brush works good for this pressing down stage as some papers get very fragile when wet. The finished paper/fabric item needs to be still dripping wet when finished at this stage so add more watered down glue if it is needed. The amount of watery glue varies with what fabric and what paper is used.
Let dry laying on the tray for a day or two, it may curl up around the edges a bit.When dry peel the fabric off the tray. Admire your new piece of material. It can be pressed with a medium iron and used in any way you would use fabric.
You need the watered down glue to really soak well in to the cotton fabric and into the paper item with no air bubbles remaining. You do not want a high ratio of glue or the finished fabric will be very stiff.
This trick can be used for brown paper bags and dinner napkins and tissue paper and wrapping paper, and even recycled coffee filters. If the coloring of the paper is not color fast then some of the colors will migrate with the glue and water.
If you want to make a water proof item out of this new fabric, such as a purse or raincoat or hat, just paint it with one more layer of this watered down glue solution when all the work and stitching has been completed to seal stitching holes, threads and seams, etc.
skipped stitches are usually due to the needle you're using. Try moving to a larger needle since the painted edge may be making it harder for the hook to grab the thread since the thread is being held tighter to the needle. Also, make very sure that the needle is fully inserted and is facing the correct way when you install it. Just a smidgen off in any direction can cause skipped stitches. If a Sharp needle isn't working for you, switch to a Universal and see if that helps. On occasion you can use a size 18 needle when working with embellished fabrics. www.marathonthread.com and usually buy just the Sharps without the fancy stuff like MicroTex, etc. The brand I like is called Organ and they are made for high-speed embroidery machines so they don't respond to heat like some of the other brands do.
..use Kaufman pimatex, a very tight weave, dense fabric (maybe similar to sewing on painted fabric although not that dense) and even with the right needles my machine will skip when adjusted "normally" when sewing this fabric (pfaff 1475). So when I take it in for service I always bring in a sample of the fabric and they adjust the hook to be closer to the needle
made entire tops out of paper towels! Used gloss medium on the towel. Two coats. Also iron the towel to make it flat. I have a whole cloth quilt waiting for me that is just paper towel. I've quilted on copy paper, other high-end papers, even watercolor weight paper. I have no suggestions for using it bare. But what you get with your paint rags can be neat.
..they are very fragile so either put organza on top before stitching or a gel medium after.
.. for collages, and could probably be attached to thin fabric with gel Medium
A creative re-use center in Durham, North Carolina, The Scrap Exchange, http://www.scrapexchange.org.They opened in 1991 and it is an amazing place to go. They do community events, have in house classes, and they have an Artist gallery. It is definitely a place to visit if you come to the area.