Saturday, 8 August 2015

DIY stamped baby clothing

Well the Zwischen is ongoing, and the waiting continues...  PLH has had the week off which has meant lots of lovely family time, and plenty of rest and afternoon naps for me.  And after my foray into stamping on baby vests last week, I have become a little obsessed with customising our old baby clothes to give them a new lease of life.  All the old white babygros and vests have now had a little customisation.  I'd like to think it detracts from the well-washed and not-as-white-as-they-used-to-be look!
Anyhow, it's been pretty easy to do, so I thought I'd share a little tutorial and a few tips of how to do your own.  They'd make great presents for a baby shower or someone who's just had a new baby.

What you need:

  • Babygros and/or vests
  • Heat-setable stamp pad ink - I used stamp pads from Yellow Owl Workshop.  They come in a great range of colours and are eco-friendly too!
  • Stamps of your choice (unsurprisingly I used a couple of birdy designs)
  • Alphabet stamps
  • Iron & Ironing board
  • Babywipes and damp kitchen roll
Then, it's simply a case of inking up your stamps and stamping on the baby clothing!  Once finished, the ink is set by ironing on the reverse, or through a tea towel for a couple of minutes.  Here's a few tips I picked up along the way:

  • I think the clothing would need to be washed first - not 100% sure but with possible shrinkage etc its probably a good idea.
  • A little trial and error on paper before committing to the clothing is a good idea, particularly for the lettering.
  • You need quite a bit of ink on your stamp to get a good transfer into the fibres of the clothing.  I found it easiest to achieve this by tapping the stamp very gently and repeatedly on the ink pad.  Pressing the stamp hard into the pad tends to get ink round the edges which then transfers onto the clothes.
  • Before transferring the stamp onto the clothes have a quick look around the edges of the stamp - if there is any ink there then dab it off with a babywipe to ensure a clean transfer.  I found this especially necessary with the alphabet stamps.
  • Put a hard surface under the area of clothing you are stamping -  a tin or a book.  This gives a bit more to press against as ideally you want to press quite hard when transferring the stamp onto the clothes.
  • Clean any ink off the stamp before changing colours - I learn this the hard way and ended up with green tinging in my orange stamp pad!  Babywipes followed by a damp piece of kitchen roll worked a treat for getting the stamps ink-free again.
  • When ironing to set the ink, keep the iron moving.  If you don't you can end up slightly burning the clothing and giving it a yellowish tinge!
And that's all there is to it - such a quick and easy way to jazz up and create personalised baby stuff!    

Other items that have had a new lease of life recently were our old muslins and cheeky wipes (re-usable baby wipes) - both of which had achieved that delightful shade of grey that many, many washes can bring!  So a couple of weeks ago I gave them the colour cover treatment with a couple of packs of Dylon Machine Dye in Sunflower Yellow and Bahama Blue.  I cannot believe how easy this was to do - I've been eyeing up various other items of clothing and household items to breathe new colour into ever since!
So, on with the waiting - who knows, perhaps I'll find some more little projects to do in the meantime!

Kate x

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