Photo Fabric – not just for pictures!

As I promised in Friday’s Post “Tips on Using Photo Print Fabrics“, today I want to share with you a quilt that my daughter is making as a gift for a friend of hers.

She choose to make this quilt a little differently, rather than using photos, she choose Bible verses that were meaningful to the person she is giving the quilt to.  So yes, as I said in the title, photo fabric is NOT just for pictures – we should probably call it ‘printer’ fabric, because that’s more appropriate.

This is just one of the blocks in the quilt. The only thing in this project that differed from the instructions I gave you on Friday’s post (see link above) is that the ‘image’ in this case is wording. So rather than locating a picture on her computer, she created the image using software on the computer. A text image like this could be created using a word processor or a graphic editor, whatever works best for you and you are most comfortable with.

This quilt was made using one of the Turning Twenty patterns, so here you can see a full ‘block’ from the quilt. One of the things that makes turning twenty quilts so much fun visually is that the individual blocks don’t jump right out at you.

On Friday’s post, I included pictures of the label that was being made to go with this quilt. Here is the label, first framed in a brown fabric to make it look like a photo frame, and then added to the quilt back.


The use of a photo as a quilt label was really a great idea – and I’m glad that she thought of it. I’ll have to try that with at least ONE of my gift projects in the future. Imagine giving a quilt as a gift and knowing that years later someone will have a picture of you that was current from the period when the quilt was made – what a wonderful gift to include!

And here is the completed quilt – you may notice that instead of 20 blocks (as their should be in a Turning Twenty quilt), this quilt was completed with 15 blocks. That is because my daughter didn’t want the quilt to be quite as wide, so she left off a row of blocks. So rather than having 5 rows of 4 blocks each, she has 5 rows of 3 blocks each.

Sorry I couldn’t get a good image of the lettering in each of the boxes, but as you can see from the closeup of the block at the top of this post, the color is a subtle one that was chosen to coordinate with the fabrics used. But each of those 15 light colored blocks does have a separate scripture verse in the block.

Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

Tips on Using Photo Print Fabrics

Today, I’d like to expand a bit on one of the products used in yesterday’s DYK post on June Tailor printer fabrics.

I have been making photo fabric quilts, pillows, purses, etc. for about 6 years now, and I have always been impressed with the Colorfast product from June Tailor. I can’t tell you how many times I have worked with this product.

I have told so many people that if you want to encourage a young person to start sewing, just use a printer fabric to include a picture in the project and they will love sewing. It is so easy to put a picture of their dog, favorite friend, first car, etc. Personalize their project and you won’t be able to stop them from making more projects.

Since I started my daughter with the pictures she has made 5 queen size photo quilts with 48 pictures each as well as lots of other smaller quilts. She makes almost all her gifts, and several projects are sewn. Next week you will see a quilt she is making to give to a friend.

I was on the road traveling so I asked her to take some pictures of the process of putting a photo onto the colorfast product. Her response was why not create a label she will add to the back of the quilt she is currently making? Great idea!!

Stayed tuned for next week to see her complete finished project, but here are the images she sent me in making her lable.

  1. Decide on pictures or writing you want.
  2. Use email, file transfer, scanner, (you get the idea) or create the image you want on your computer. (Just because I am calling it photo fabric, don’t forget that anything you can print on your printer at home can be printed onto this fabric.)
  3. Resize the image to the size you want the finished product to be.
  4. Put sheet of fabric photo sheet with paper on the back into your printer. IMPORTANT: Needs to be an inkjet printer – most current home printers are inkjet, but double check if you aren’t sure what you have. Optional – you may want to do a test print of your finished image before printing onto the colorfast sheet.
  5. Print the image.
  6. Let the ink dry.
  7. Peel paper backing off
  8. Rinse fabric with design under water.
  9. Let dry – (I let dry on a terry cloth towel)
  10. Press
  11. It’s now ready to sew into your project!

Give this a try – you’ll love it and the results!

Here are some other projects I’ve seen recently using photo printer fabrics


Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

Quilt Block “Hope”

Back in February, I told you about the Quilt Block of the Month program that is being done in Hancock Fabrics stores around the country. Today, I would like to share with you my tips on the creation of the second block in that program (for those of you who missed the first block post, it can be found here).

First, I have to tell you, if you are still interested in joining the Quilt Block of the Month program at your local Hancock Fabrics, you are welcome to do so. Stores will be glad to help you catch up with the program, and as you can see in this link: Journey Quilt, you will have a beautiful quilt when you complete the program.

All stores have free demonstrations of the block, and a quilter on hand to assist with any questions you might have with the current or past blocks. Generally the free demonstration is on the third Saturday of the month, but some stores have chosen alternate dates, so make sure you check with your location before you plan to show up!

Now, on to the block itself! This block was actually the March block (I’ve been so busy with my running around that I just got it stitched up for you), but as I said it’s never to late to get started.

The quilt this year was designed by Laura Jones who did a great job coming up with the ideas for our “Journey” quilt. The block from the first month was called “Treasure” and this block is titled “Hope” Laura choose to use a sun for this block. What a great choice – doesn’t the sun have that effect on us and our hopes and dreams? And particularly this time of year when so many of us are looking at rainy skies and ‘hoping’ for the sun to chase out the clouds.

This block is an appliqué block. I suggest that you draw the sun flames and sun center onto the fusible web – I used wonder under from Pellon.

Next,iron the rough side (the side with the glue on it) to the fabric you will be using to create the appliqué. Make sure your iron is applied only to the paper, and not to the fabric – that way you won’t get any glue on the surface of your iron! After the paper and fabric have completely cooled, cut our your shapes. Here I am working on the sun’s flames.

Once you have finished cutting out your appliqué shapes, it’s time to apply them to the block. Peel the paper off the back of the appliques. Place the design on the block and iron again. This will join the applique with the quilt block. When you are finishing off the edges around the sun you can appliqué in many ways: blanket stitch by hand or on your machine using a choice of decorative stitches. I decided to use a satin stitch fairly tight. Whenever you pile a lot of stitches in a small space (which is what I did using the zig zag stitch or satin stitch) you need to use a stabilizer on the back so that your fabric doesn’t stretch out. I used the stabilizer – Totally Stable from Sulky. Totally Stable is a tear away stabilizer. Pin it to the back of your project, then I iron over it and it clings to my project – this gives your fabric some extra body for the stitching you are about to do. Finish up with your satin stitch design and than simply tear the stabilizer away. Here are pictures of the stabilizer package (so you can find it yourself), and the back of my project after I have finished the satin stitching and as I am tearing the stabilizer away (the section I have removed is in the upper left corner of the project).


You now have a sun palette to finish anyway you choose for the center of the sun. You can add yarn, trim, beads, satin stitch in a swirl, or leave and quilt the design later.

Here are some of the ideas I’ve seen used to finish the center of the sun. As you can see, a swirl is what the pattern calls for.

Finished with a dress trim

A dark tan yarn in the center

A variegated yarn to finish, this yarn is heavier than the one that uses the dark tan.

As you can see, this is a quilt that will include a lot of the quilter’s personality, which is perfect because it truly is a ‘journey’ that we will all go through as we complete this quilt. Are you ready to join the Journey?
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing