Zap Your Scraps with this Easy Collage Postcard Technique

scrap fabric postcardWhat does your studio look like right about now? If it's like mine, there are scraps of fused fabric here, wrapping and collage papers there, plus bits of ribbon, piles of magazines and catalogs, and, yes, I'll admit it, even some crumpled candy wrappers (Santa remembered my sweet tooth).

But if you think I'm going to sweep these scraps into a giant bag and put it out in the trash, you must have stumbled onto this blog by mistake. You and I both know I am going to turn those scraps into fiber art gold, using a fast and easy method for collaged postcards Wen Redmond describes in the current issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.

I love this technique because it's fast, makes a lot of postcards at once, and it combines fabric and paper-something we do a lot of in Cloth Paper Scissors!

 Here is an abbreviated form of Wen's directions.

1. Determine the size and quantity of postcards you plan to make and multiply to establish the size of your base palette. Cut a sheet of interfacing to that size. For example, to make twenty 4" x 5" postcards, you would need a 20" x 20" base.

2. Assemble a family of colored fabric scraps (pre-fused or not) and papers and spontaneously lay them on your interfacing base. Keep layering until the base is covered.

3. Carefully lay your collage on the ironing pad, and place the parchment paper over your collage. Following the manufacturer's directions, fuse the papers and fabrics to the interfacing with the iron.

4. Add additional embellishment to the surface. Collage small bits with a glue stick, stamp on the surface, write with markers, and iron fused transparent cloth on top for added depth. Don't make the surface too complicated at this stage.

5. Remove the release paper from the back of the collage and iron backing fabric to the back side of your collage.

6. Use your rotary cutter, ruler, and cutting mat to cut your postcards from the completed base. Check each postcard to make sure everything is securely glued.

stitches postcards7. Add accents or designs with paints, colored pencils, stitching, etc. Lay out the postcards on a protected surface and paint the edges with metallic paint using a foam brush. Let the postcards dry.

8. Brush each postcard with a 1:1 solution of gloss medium and water.

9. Using a bristle brush, work the medium into the top surface of each postcard, especially the paper areas and any lightly glued areas. Be sure to hit the edges with the medium for a rich finish. Allow the cards to dry on the plastic surface.

You could have several of these going at once in various stages. Or you could make up several sheets up to the point just before where you cut, then save them for when you need some postcard or artist trading card backgrounds down the road and start the cutting and finishing process.

This is just one of the great mixed-media fiber art projects in Cloth Paper Scissors. If you haven't checked it out lately, you should!

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