Waste Not, Want Not. Stretching Your Vinyl Stash!

 

Tired of wasting vinyl when working on word signs that use multiple colors? You could ignore the format and cut each color to use the smallest piece possible but trying to get it correctly lined up can be a pain. So many of us just chalk up the waste as an unfortunate by-product of our craft. However, if you plan carefully you can minimize the waste and still get great alignment.

I made this logo sign for a friend to put in her vendor booth for a trade show. The logo is two colors, the bulk of the lettering is black and the word “Passion” and two small diamonds are purple.

By creating multiple weeding rectangles to surround each word instead of one big square, a large useable rectangle of vinyl was saved for another project. The purple portions of the vinyl sign did not need to be formatted so weeding rectangles fit to size were used and the words were easily placed on the leather after the black vinyl was heat pressed.

Materials

Leather for sign

Siser EasyWeed Extra heat transfer vinyl (for leather)

KNK Zing/Zing Air/Maxx Air Standard Material Detail Blade

Maxx Air Settings

Force = 43, Speed = 210, Blade Offset = .25, Passes = 1, Blade Height = 25

Process Details

Set up sign in cutting program separating the colors to different layers. Cut each color vinyl, reversing (mirror) for the heat transfer vinyl.

When weeding, preserve any large areas of un-used vinyl by cutting out and setting aside for future use.

Heat press to the leather one color at a time. I did the black letters first and then lined up the purple by eye and pressed. Press for the time and temperature recommended by the manufacturer.

Closing

Careful planning can create less waste and maximize your vinyl stash, so you can make more fun stuff!

Handmade Napkins Decorated with Heat Transfer Vinyl

Photo of Handmade Napkins Heat Transfer VinylSometimes it’s nice to have a set of cloth napkins. No need to save them for special occasions; they are fun for everyday use. A lightweight cotton fabric works great, and can be quickly cut and hemmed. Make these handmade napkins decorated with heat transfer vinyl.

I used this tutorial, written by Theresa on the Spoonflower blog for tips on sewing the napkins. I really like the way she explains her mitered corner method. It reduces bulk at the corners and provides a nice finished look.

I cut my napkins from 34 inch wide fabric, which enabled me to create 4 from a yard. I cut 4 squares at 17 inches and kept the hems fairly small to give me finished napkins that are about 16 inches square. (Of course, you can simply purchase blank napkins and add the HTV, but making them is more fun!)

Materials:

Settings on Zing:

  • Force – 25
  • Speed – 10
  • Multicut – 1 or 2

Steps:

  • Cut and sew napkins as described above.
  • Import file in cutting software. Don’t forget to mirror design to prepare for HTV application.
  • Cut and weed heat transfer vinyl.
  • Use iron or heat press to apply heat transfer vinyl to napkin, according to manufacturers instructions.

Enjoy your new napkins or give to a friend!Handmade Napkins Decorated with Heat Transfer Vinyl

 

 

 

 

Deco FILM® Paint FX


Cool weather is finally arriving in Florida and I wanted to embellish a long sleeve t-shirt for Thanksgiving Day. Finding fall colors this time of year is nearly impossible, everything is already Christmas in the stores! I did snag a lovely purple top and wanted something shimmery but not too sparkly for my design. Deco FILM® Paint FX was perfect! This heat transfer vinyl comes in six beautiful metallic colors. The effect is a soft shimmer. And it is thinner than regular HTV molding to the fabric, so the designs look screen painted rather than laying on the surface. Wish it came in all the colors!

Materials

Deco FILM® Paint FX  I used the Champagne color.

T-shirt

Maxx Air Settings

KNK Zing/Zing Air/Maxx Air Standard Material Detail Blade

Force = 42, Speed = 200, Blade Offset = .25, Blade Height = 25

Process Details

This vinyl cuts just like every other heat transfer vinyl, minimal blade exposure, mirror the design, weed the negative and carrier side adhered to the mat. The weeding was super easy, comes up cleanly and with little effort.

Heat press with a firm pressure at 310°F – 330°F for 17 to 20 seconds. Then remove carrier sheet while warm, and with a Teflon® or parchment paper covering the design, repress for 2 seconds.

Deco FILM® Paint FX is a great alternative to the glitter metallic heat transfer vinyl products, for when you want a subtler shimmer and shine. Love it!

Flour Sack Towel with Heat Transfer Vinyl – Zing Orbit with Sure Cuts Alot

Flour Sack Towel  Heat Transfer Towel Our little town does not have much to offer visitors. So when I saw that our local fish market had expanded and started selling items highlighting our area, I asked them if they’d like me to make up a few things for them to offer. I had made this file into a shirt for my husband last year using an inkjet transfer. I decided it would do well on a flour sack towel with a few changes. This time I used Heat Transfer Vinyl.

I recently purchased a KNK Zing Orbit and am now using Sure Cuts Alot. Being accustomed to Make The Cut, there has been a small learning curve, but for basic cutting I was able to get right at it with no problems.

Materials:

  1. ThermoFlex Plus
  2. Flour sack Towel (I purchased mine at Walmart)
  3. Red-Capped Blade
  4. Iron or Heatpress

Settings on Zing Orbit with SCAL:

  1. Pressure: 50
  2. Speed: 15
  3. Overcut: 1mm
  4. Multi-cut: Off

Steps:

  1. Open or import file in SCAL
  2. Reverse design
  3. Cut design and weed
  4. Set heat press at 335 degrees and press for 17 minutes (for hand iron, refer to manufacturer’s instructions)
  5. Fold towel in half and crease mid-point using iron or heat press
  6. Lay towel flat and use crease to place center HTV
  7. Press vinyl onto towel (Use teflon sheet or towel between iron and vinyl)
  8. Remove clear backing and repeat

I am having fun getting to know my Zing Orbit. So far, one of my favorite features on the Orbit is the ability to adjust the pinch wheels. The ability to move them close enough to cut small pieces of vinyl without using a mat saves me a lot of time, and I find myself using the feature a lot.

 

Heat Transfer on Heat Sensitive Materials?

Have you ever worried about melting or damaging a shirt, bag or other material when applying a heat transfer vinyl? I know I have – probably because I’ve melted an item or two in my crafting endeavors (okay, maybe more than that, but I’m not counting).

ThermoFlex Extra is THE solution to personalization with heat sensitive materials. It is available in 15 great colors:

Twelve of these colors can be layered for additional design options!

ThermoFlex Extra only needs to be pressed for short time periods at 310-315 degrees Fahrenheit on nylon, synthetic leather, leather and other materials. This means you can personalize those materials that were previously untouchable by any kind of heat activated product!

Each material should be tested first.

  • Prepress for 5 seconds (optional, test first)
  • Press for 3-5 seconds
  • Let cool and peel the backing off
  • Cover with a teflon sheet
  • Repress for 10 seconds

Using these steps you can press to nylon, synthetic leather, leather and many more heat sensitive materials. For polyester, press at 330-335 degrees Fahrenheit for 17-20 seconds (ThermoFlex Plus instructions).

As with most heat transfer vinyls, the standard (red cap) blade is recommended. This HTV comes on a thick plastic carrier that makes it easy to cut and weed.

Cut the design in reverse (mirror image).

When applying to a water resistant or moisture-wicking material, clean the area with rubbing alcohol and allow it to dry before pressing the HTV onto it.

Note from the manufacturer: Dye migration has occurred with low energy dyes in polyester and poly-bled fabrics.

Stop back on Monday to see my projects using ThermoFlex Extra!