Saturday, October 31, 2009

Freezer Paper Stenciling Tutorial

This is the second item that I taught how to do this morning. Whew - two tutorials in one day. That's definitely a record for me.

A few words on what freezer paper stenciling is: freezer paper is like wax paper with a parchment paper backing. You're simply using the freezer paper to make a stencil and then using that stencil for painting onto whatever you want. (The pictures below are from when I made shirts for the girls when Britt graduated from seminary this summer - they each saw "I love Daddy" but one in Greek and one in Hebrew. I do not recommend using tiny little words like this for your first project. Go for a bigger image that doesn't have as many details.)


  • image to trace
  • sharpie
  • freezer paper
  • cutting mat
  • exacto knife
  • clothing to be stenciled on
  • iron
  • permanent fabric paint (I like Tulip brand)
  • paintbrush
  • cardboard or extra freezer paper for inbetween layers of fabric

1.Place the picture under the freezer paper (shiny side down) and trace with a sharpie.
2.Tape the freezer paper down on a cutting mat. Using an exacto knife, cut the image. If you have additional images within (i.e. windows, eyes, etc.) cut those out and save them.

3.Iron the stencil onto your fabric, shiny side down. Make sure that you iron all around the edges of the stencil so that a seal is created for your image. If you have windows or centers of images (like the middle of the "a's" and "o's" below) make sure you iron those on as well.

4.Place the cardboard or freezer paper underneath your image so that the paint doesn't seep through.

5. Mix your paint to your desired color. Using a paintbrush, paint directly over the stencil, making sure that it is spread evenly. Be careful that your strokes don't go too far and get onto the outside fabric. You may need to apply additional coats of paint, but wait about 2 hours between each coat.

6.Let the paint dry overnight and then carefully peel off the freezer paper. Or in this case, let your happy little helpers have fun taking it off.

7. Put an old cloth on top of the paint and iron the image for about 30 seconds. This will set the paint permanently.
8. Done!
Again, simple and doesn't involve a lot of steps or materials. And there are so many applications - shirts, holiday themes on table runners, placemats or napkins, initials on a bag, and so many other things.

Washing instructions: Wait 72 hours before washing, and then wash inside out.

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