Hi everyone, I haven’t posted on here in a while as life has been B.U.S.Y! I have a big project happening at work and am currently organising some photo shoots for it which is taking up not only a lot of time, but a lot of headspace so I haven’t had much chance to write recently.
Today I have a day off for my birthday which is tomorrow and I’m meeting some friends later to go axe-throwing. Not your usual Friday afternoon activity I know! So I’m taking the time to get a bit of writing done in the morning.
I want to share something a bit different today. Last week I was invited to Happy Fabric UK, an iron-on vinyl company to try out their products and I had so much fun.
All the materials were gifted but there was no obligation to post, I just am because I really like their products and thought you’d enjoy reading about the experience. Right. That’s the legal bit out of the way. On with the show.
When Hayley from Happy Fabric first messaged me inviting me to come in my first thought was “you’ve definitely messaged the wrong person here… why me?!” When I finally realised that was just imposter syndrome kicking in and she did definitely mean to message me I was so excited.
I’d heard of Happy Fabric and had always thought it looked really fun to be able to customise your clothes using vinyl to create something unique. However I’d never tried it as I thought you’d need lots of equipment to do it. Spoiler alert: you don’t.
I started off by sketching up a few ideas for some items we could make on the day. With Hayley’s help I chose 3 to make and adapted the ideas to be on different fabrics. I decided to make a denim jacket with a large design on the back, a t-shirt with a sewing related slogan and a cushion for my living room.
We made the t-shirt first as that was the design I was most sure about. Choosing colours was the hardest part as they sell so many colours in a range of finishes. I went for lilac in Happy flex, which is the standard vinyl layered with navy Happy flock which feels a bit velvety.
The first step was to design the text. We did this using a program called Silhouette which is basically an easy photoshop specifically designed for use with a Silhouette cutting machine.
You then send the design to the printer which cuts out the design for you. As you can see, I was fascinated!
Next come my favourite part: weeding! This is where you remove all the excess vinyl and are left with your design. I think this should be some sort of new therapy as it’s on par with popping bubble wrap.
Then you lay out your design, cover it with grease proof paper and press! I used a pressing machine for the t-shirt for the novelty factor but you can use an iron on two dot setting with no water in. Just do not forget the grease proof paper to protect both the iron and your design. For full info on ironing your design Happy Fabric have a handy print out here. Once it cooled a bit I peeled off the backing and did the second layer.
I’m so thrilled with how it turned out. It looked so professional! I’m happy to report that is washed excellently too.
My other two designs were also a success. The cushion design was the Leo and Aquarius symbols (slightly wrong as I got a bit line happy and ironed it on wrong) which are mine and my boyfriend’s star signs. Yes I am soppy. It was made with a mixture of hand cut pieces and stars cut on the signature machine.
My final design was the jacket which changed a bit from my original design. I decided to make the most of the signature machine and cut out a saying in the cloud, and do handcut raindrop shaped pieces instead of a mix of shapes. As the jacket is more textured that the t-shirt it requires a bit longer to fix the vinyl on but still affixes really well. I think this is my favourite make of the day. I love it so much!
I had so much fun at the crafting day and am so grateful to Happy Fabric for inviting me. They were kind enough to gift me some vinyl pieces to take home and I have since made a t-shirt for my sister for her birthday which she is thrilled with. This one was hand drawn, hand cut and ironed so it shows you don’t need any special equipment to get crafty. Anyone can do it!