By Guest Blogger Cara
Every time I leave the office to get the mail, I wish I had a bag. we usually have a pile of outgoing letters and even more incoming. The P.O. box is usually stuffed with catalogs and magazines, and I tend to drop ten things before I get back to my car, and I usually misplace the box key. I’ve been known to take it home for a long weekend every once in a while, wash it in my jeans, etc… well, no more! Behold, the mail bag.
I made it with a super easy stenciling method.
Get your design on your freezer paper. There are several ways to do this. My favorite is to cut 8.5″ x 11″ sheets out of the roll and feed them through an inkjet printer. Do *not not not* feed the paper through a laser printer, it will melt and break your heart every time. Another option is to print your design on plain paper and tape it to freezer paper, then cut through both layers and remove the plain paper. This time, I just drew my design, since it was simple and I’m out of printer ink.
Cut out your design using your x-acto knife and, if you’d like, a ruler for those straight pieces.
Beware of those little islands in your text/image (see: the letter A). In order for your print to come out right, you’ll need to cut yourself a bridge. This will keep the island from getting lost and/or ironed in a wonky fashion. Just leave a little piece from the outside white space to the inside white space to keep the inside space in its’ place.
Continue cutting out your design, beware of those tricky spots. If you don’t trust yourself to remember to make bridges as you go, you can always mark them ahead of time. It’s impossible to undo a cut!
Now get an iron really hot. I use the cotton setting. Iron that sucker down.
Carefully cut away your bridges – don’t cut through your fabric. if you’re paranoid, you can leave the bridges and fill in places that need paint when you’ve finished this whole process.
Stick something behind your stenciling, like a newspaper or folder, to block the paint from bleeding onto your table or the backside of your project. Then, dab thin layers over your stencil, waiting for the paint to dry between layers. When all of the empty space is completely covered with paint, wait for it to completely dry before peeling your stencil off.
Voila: a Mail Bag
I added a nice carabiner to clip the key to – one can never be too careful about these things.