Freezer Paper Stenciling!

 Today, I finally took on the challenge of doing some painting/stenciling with freezer paper.

Let me tell you, I have no idea why I haven't tried this sooner!

It all started when a friend wanted me to paint a design on a shirt for her.  It turned out much better than I was expecting...if I do say so myself.  I'll share the shirt at a later date.

In addition to painting this shirt for a friend, I'll also be painting a plaque for her.
But I feel like I got the good end of the deal.  I finally got to do the freezer paper stencil technique, in addition to getting my hair 'painted' and trimmed. I love having friends that I can swap services with!

{Another friend posted on facebook that next time we need to add massages to our swap, and I'll make her a cheesecake.  I'm totally all about that!}

Anyway, on to the last crafts I did today.

Personalized Library Tote Bags.

I have a couple of little friends that will be having their 2nd & 3rd birthday parties soon. 
The theme for the party is BOOKS!
I figured I'd do a little stencil design on the bags with their initial, because who doesn't want a cute library/book bag?

Well, I decided to put together a little tutorial about the process I went through, and what I learned as well.

Here it goes.

Come up with a design.  Because I forgot to work on one and get it printed out at work this week, I just used Mac and traced directly from there.

Yes, the laptop is sitting upside down.  But that's what you have to do when the screen won't lay flat, and you need to trace on the screen.
{Before you try this with other laptops, be sure that your screen can handle the tracing.  A Mac screen is glass, or something of that sort.  But my other laptop wouldn't handle the tracing.}

I actually realized I liked tracing the design on to the freezer paper directly from the laptop.  This is because of the glow from the laptop.  Can you see it?

Just doing a little {okay....a LOT!} of tracing.

Now, get out your exacto knife.  Be sure you have a cutting mat beneath everything!
If you don't have a mat, a thick piece of cardboard might do the trick.

As you begin cutting things out, cut with care.  If you have more than 1 layer, you will likely want to keep parts you cut out to mask some areas.  {I'll show you masking in a few pictures.}

Finally got all the cutting done.

Now, on with the ironing and painting .

From my earlier project, I learned that it is better to mask things off, than to try to add more layers of paint on the cloth.

To mask, I saved the 'inside' of what I cut out.  For this example....an 'N'.

I first ironed down the 'N', with the iron set on the cotton setting {or the setting for the type of material you are using}.

I then ironed the flower burst design on top of the 'N' to where I wanted it.  
Hopefully by this time you have the paint colors picked out.  If you are like me, you have way too many acrylic paints, and love them all!

But, because you are painting on cloth, you will want to find a medium that can be added to the acrylic paints, to make it washable fabric paint.

I used Delta Ceramcoat Textile Medium.  This was picked up at Hobby Lobby.  According the the directions on the bottle, you are to use 2 parts acrylic paint to 1 part textile medium.  Mix the two things together, then get to painting!

Yes, I wasn't thinking correctly, and decided to try 2 colors.  Might as well 'go big or go home'!

Once the first layer of painting is done, let everything sit and dry for awhile.  When it looks like the paint is more dry, go ahead and carefully pull off the freezer paper.
This is what it will look like.  When I pulled off the top layer, it also pulled of the 'N' with it.
If you look carefully, you can see where the 'N' will go, off to the right side.

I then lined up the 'N' stencil and ironed it down to where I masked it off earlier.

Then I finished this bag off with filling in the 'N' with a fun color.

For the second bag, I went with a big star!
Again, I started by masking the 'j' first.  Then I added the star stencil outline.

With this one, I just put the 'j' on the bag, without thinking where exactly the dot of the 'j' goes.  
So I had to cut out another little outline for the dot, and do a little surgery to get everything to line up, without getting pain on the star.

And now, the finished products {well, almost finished}!

I am going to let these dry overnight, to make sure things are completely dry.
The last step is to turn the bags inside out, then heat set the paint for about 20 seconds.
{Be sure to cover the painted area with a thin towel.}

I sure hope the kiddos like them, because I sure do!

Now, what can I make next?  Send your suggestions or requests my way!  :)

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