Thursday, April 18, 2013

DIY fabric labels

I've been wanting to purchase labels to see in my items for a while and there are two options: buy or DIY.
The Etsy route was pretty pricey,  and a bit overwhelming to sift through options and handling times. The DIY route was certainly going to be it for me.

I found several tutorials that involved iron on transfers and twill tape and that was the route that I was prepared to go. The downside to this was that although it didn't seem over complicated, it seemed fairly labor intensive in that you had to make the transfer, cut them out, iron them to the tape, cut out the labels then fray check the edges. You were also limited to the size of the twill tape you purchased.

While at the store to buy the iron on transfer paper, I stumbled upon this:

Then the light bulb went off, why not just print them directly on fabric and cut them out, vs going to the trouble to print turn iron them on the twill tape? That would totally cut out a couple of the steps!

The catch?
I don't even have office on my computer, I have the generic free version: Open office. Now, for all of my purposes this has suited me just fine but I had to find a way to get these labels onto this sheet in a way that I could customize (which I couldn't do with the address label template). And fill as much of the sheet as I could, so to maximize my labels per sheet. I used my logo,  shrank it and added it next to the font, then just copied and pasted it into the columns I formatted.

After a few tries and some tweaks, I ended up with this:

Printed on regular paper for the rough draft

That's a total of 36 labels per sheet, and there were 3 sheets per pack.  I was able to use a 40% off coupon for the 9.99 they cost, bringing it down to 6.00. Doing the math that's about 5 cents a label. The cheapest labels I found on Etsy were about 15 cents each and were not customizable.

The whole process took under and hour and you can print with colored ink if you choose. All you have to do is let the ink dry for about 10 mins ( I was too impatient for this, I just took a hair dryer for a few minutes), then the directions say to press it carefully for 1-2 minutes to set the ink. It advises a cold water bath to make them completely colorfast.

You could totally use colored ink, or change the sizes of the labels and since they don't require fray-check, you could make fold over labels too!

I'm considering trying to dye the labels once they come out of the printer. This brand comes in both an off white and white, as well as am iron on version as well that the manufacturer claims is sew able.

Eek! I love how they came out! The are .75"h x 2.5" Long. no fraying and no apparent color transfer! 6.00 for 108 fully custom labels in less than one hour?! Yes, please :)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Celebrating the Sunshine--241 Tote round 2

It's finally warm around here, the sun is out and it is absolutely beautiful. Time for flip flops and flowers! What better way to welcome the season than a new bag?! I pulled out my 241 pattern by Noodlehead and pulled the most sunshiney fabrics from my stash and this was the end result. It oozes sunshine, just like I wanted :)
I listed in my Etsy shop, but I"m already thinking of deleting the listing and keeping it for myself.

The last time I made a 241 tote, I was a bit disappointed at the size, but by using both the exterior slip and zippered pockets (and actually remembering to add a slip pocket to the lining this time), it holds so much more than I really need it to.

Happy Spring :)