DIY & Crafts

Craft-lover's school fair kit: Using transfers for T-shirts and beanbags

Craft-lover's school fair kit: Using transfers for T-shirts and beanbags

Author: Canadian Living

DIY & Crafts

Craft-lover's school fair kit: Using transfers for T-shirts and beanbags

Transfers can be terrific fun, another way to get your logo out there. We have made bean bags and T-shirts from the same Big Top image.

For our fun fair, we made a logo by scanning Tessa's painting into the computer, then printed it out onto transfer paper. In this case we used the HP 325 Photosmart printer, (a 4 x 6-inch photo printer). We cut the transfer paper into 4 x 6-inch pieces and printed on that. We then ironed the transfers on to T-shirts and beanbags. The key is to follow the intructions carefully. Here are the instructions:


The trick to transfer prints is to choose "orientation" in your printer menu and choose the function that will give you a mirror image of your design, something such as "mirror image," "flip horizontal" or "reverse image."

The design should print on the front of the transfer paper and appear reversed.

1. Print a test page on plain paper first to make sure that it will print correctly when you use the transfer paper.

2. Get ready to iron: kids need an adult's help for this part. Preheat your iron on the highest cotton setting for at least 8 minutes or until it is very hot. No steam allowed. Lots of irons will shut off after pre-heating. Make sure your iron is on. Place a piece of fabric or a pillowcase on a hard sturdy surface to protect the surface. Don't use a glass surface, a heat-sensitive surface or an ironing board.

Put your T-shirt on the pillowcase and iron out any wrinkles (which will make a mess of the t-shirt transfer).

Use scissors and trim around the design, leaving a 1/4-inch border to prevent colours from bleeding.

Place the transfer with the printed side against the fabric and the back of the transfer paper facing up.

3. Apply firm and steady pressure when ironing and pay strict attention to ironing times. You have to iron for the entire time (as stated) using firm pressure. Begin to iron at one edge of the transfer using several parallel passes a few inches apart. Iron for 20 seconds on each pass, making 4 or 5 passes for a full-page transfer. Smaller transfers require less time. Keep the iron moving at an even pace -- if allowed to rest, it can scorch. Repeat the ironing process, using firm pressure, with parallel passes from the other side. Make sure to iron all the edges and corners.

Ironing Times:
• full page -- 3 minutes
• half-page -- 1 1/2 minutes
• quarter page -- 45 seconds

4. Remove the paper backing. Allow the transfer to cool for at least one minute, and then use a fingernail or a dull, flat blade to gently lift one corner of the paper backing.

Hold down the fabric with one hand and peel the paper backing away with the other hand. If the paper tears, start at another corner.

5. Washing instructions

To keep the transfer looking great, follow these instructions.

• Wait at least 24 hours before washing.
• Turn the fabric inside out before washing.
• Machine wash separately (first time only) in cold water with colour-safe detergent.
• Remove promptly and dry on a warm setting. Leaving the wet fabric in the washer can cause the image to bleed. If bleeding occurs, rewash immediately.

Note: After washing, do not iron directly over the transfer -- the transfer will stick to the iron.

You can use these transfers on anything made of fabric. For the bean bags we took some scrap white cotton and ironed on transfers then sewed them up and filled them with popcorn. Click here to see the printer and bean bags.
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DIY & Crafts

Craft-lover's school fair kit: Using transfers for T-shirts and beanbags