Friday, January 15, 2010

Just Something I Actually Made

I have completed a project! I'm pretty excited!

It's a birthday present for my friend Christy. And I was inspired by a project I saw on Just Something I Made and I thought that Christy would like the vintage, garden graphics. We both share a love of gardening and an appreciation for vintage.

So I made two tote bags using graphics from Just Something I Made. And the program I used to put it all together? Printmaster V 17.0. Yes, an older version card program. And you know, it worked.

The card program does have it's limits, and you can see by the fonts used in the final product. I'm not very adept at manipulating them with this program, but it still turned out cute. I'm not complaining!

I used Tailor Iron-On Art-Wear for this project. This particular iron-on does not require that you mirror the image. I hadn't tried this brand before using it on this project. I actually bought a pack of plain totes and the iron-ons at Walmart.

For the first bag, I basically tried to copy the Cathe Holden design.

And it turned out thus:

And I struck out on my own design bent for the second bag. First I printed it in all black:

but I thought it was too dark. You couldn't really see the detail in the cucumber graphic. Very dark.

So I tried some color. And changed the drop-down shadows to grey.

I like green! I like it!

I think you can see more detail in the cucumber graphic and it's not just a solid black. Cool!

The iron-on process was simple.
1)Print out your design, not mirrored, just regular.
2)Iron the wrinkles out of the project you want to apply the iron-on to.
3)Lay a pillow case on a flat, hard surface (I used the kitchen table).
4)Make sure the iron is steam-free.
5)Place the included parchment paper over the iron-on.
6)Apply straight, steady pressure, don't slide the iron. Let the ironed area cool for 2 minutes.
7)Remove parchment.

It was fairly straight forward but the included parchment was TOO SMALL! It didn't cover the design surface and left some edges exposed to the iron. They melted!

I consoled myself and convinced myself that it's not too bad. Maybe even vintage-like?

But this was the first bag made. Did I learn from this mishap? This mistake? NOOOOO--I had to have a go at using the same piece of parchment paper and ruin the 2nd bag.

I thought I would just iron half the design at a time. I decided this at 11 p.m. At night. And my large iron did not just want to iron a half at a time; it wanted to iron just a bit more. And the 2nd bag (not pictured here) melted. Big holes in half of the design. I decided it was time to quit and went to bed!

But the next day I gave it another shot.

Soooo, after experiencing a too-small-piece-of-parchment with not one, but TWO bags, I finally realized that something needed to change (I'm not the speediest of learners sometimes). I decided to use my own parchment paper. Genius!

Remember when parchment paper was hard to find? Well, I mean, Walmart didn't carry it? But Martha Stewart changed all that. Thank you Martha! When she showed how she used it in baking and cooking in her earlier shows, the demand went up, and now, now...Walmart is a purveyor of parchment paper. Thank you Walmart!

The 2nd bag turned out great! No ragged edges! No holes! So remember--USE YOUR OWN PARCHMENT!

And finally, we present,

Bag 1 (with "vintage" edges)

and Bag 2.

Happy Birthday Christy! I hope you like your gift! XOXO


  1. I love this post!!

    First, because, well, you totally did the tote project and they turned out FABULOUS!!

    Second, because you linked to me and made me feel like a rock star.

    And third, because if the NUMBER ONE THING, above all others, that I appreciate Martha for is that she turned me on to parchment paper. We use it practically every single day. (I haven't scraped baked goods from a pan in years.) And I have also used it like you for iron-ons!

    Thanks so much for sharing!!

  2. Thanks so much for your kind words. I think it took longer to post about this project than it did to actually make it!

    Thank you bunches for all the wonderful tutorials you post--I enjoy looking at them often!

  3. Those are great! I like the vintage look - remember - any imperfections in a creation just solidifies the fact that it is handmade and original!