HEAT TRANSFER PRINTING


This technique relies on the fact that disperse dyes will transfer from paper to fabric with heat. The cloth fibres open with heat allowing the dyes to bond permanently.
The process is simple and allows the designer to create multi-coloured designs without specialist equipment.
This technique only works with synthetic fabric. The higher the synthetic content of the fabric the more permanent and fast the print will be. Part synthetic fabrics can be used but the colour yield will be lower. The dyes will not be fast on natural fabrics.
Dyes can be bought in paint, powder or crayon form. The paints are water-based, dry cleanable and do not change the hand of the fabric. The crayons are only available in a limited range but the colours can be overlaid for different shades.
This techniques works best on light coloured fabrics.
The brightest colours will be achieved on 100% synthetics such as polyesters, triacetates and acrylic, although a 60% synthetic will also work
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PREPARING FABRICS FOR HEAT TRANSFER PRINTING

Some fabrics have a dressing which is a starch or a paste applied to them by the manufacturer. This dressing is applied to give the fabrics a crisp sharp finish. If disperse dyes are transferred to a dressed fabric some of the image will be released with the ‘paste’ when washed.
Always pre-wash fabrics before this technique. It can be hand washed or washed in the machine. Do not add conditioner to the rinse water.
Recycled fabrics such as shirts, sheets or net curtains are excellent for samples.



HEAT TRANSFER CRAYONS

Materials
Fabric Transfer Crayons e.g. Crayola
Iron
Baking Parchment
Synthetic fabric
Design

Method
Apply these crayons to smooth, non-absorbent, thin paper such as photocopy paper. Thicker papers will not allow the heat to reach the fabric
Colour the paper making sure there is a good even coat of colour.
The image will be transferred by ironing. Place the fabric right side up onto the ironing board and iron to remove any creases and heat the fabric. This will help the image to transfer. The iron will need to be the hottest temp possible without scorching the fabric. Place the coloured paper face down onto the fabric. Hold the paper firmly so that it doesn’t move and blur the image. Iron slowly making sure that the iron heats each part of the paper.
Sliding the iron across the fabric will result in the image having blurry edges. Lifting the iron it and then re-placing it back down will result in a clearer image.
Lift up a corner of the paper carefully to see if the image has transferred. It takes approx 1-2 mins depending on the fabric.
Check the corners occasionally to see if the colour has transferred, replacing the paper if it needs a little more time.
Each piece of paper will give two to three prints depending on the fabric used. Each subsequent print however will be lighter in colour.



HEAT TRANSFER PAINTS



Materials
Transfer paints e.g. Deka Iron-On Transfer Paints, Pebeo Transfer Paints
Iron
Synthetic Fabric
Baking Parchment
Brushes or applicators
Design

Method
Apply transfer paints to non-absorbent, smooth, thin paper such as photocopy paper. Thicker papers will not allow the heat to reach the fabric.
There are different brands available, some of which change colour considerably after transferring. Pebeo Transfer Paints change colour the least.
The colours can be diluted to make them paler or mixed to make new colours. Make a note of which colour you have used on your paper as some of the darker colours are hard to tell apart.
To make a strong even colour paint your paper with the brush strokes going in one direction. Let the paint dry. Paint the paper again with the same colour. This time the brush strokes should go in the opposite direction.
Always wait for the paint to dry completely before transferring.
Papers coloured in this way can give five to six prints. The first prints will be the strongest colours. For a paler print only iron for a short while.
The image will be transferred by ironing. Place the fabric right side up onto the ironing board and iron to remove any creases and heat the fabric. This will help the image to transfer. The iron will need to be the hottest temp possible without scorching the fabric. Place the coloured paper face down onto the fabric. Hold the paper firmly so that it doesn’t move and blur the image. Iron slowly making sure that the iron heats each part of the paper.
Sliding the iron across the fabric will result in the image having blurry edges. Lifting the iron it and then re-placing it back down will result in a clearer image.
Papers can be painted for future use. Store away from strong light and interleave with tissue or scrap paper to avoid the painted surfaces touching.


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