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Let’s talk…..Fabric Postcard Tutorial

Let’s talk…..Fabric Postcard Tutorial

I have been thinking about doing this since the interview with SwapDex. It was really how i started in the big, bad world of swapping. I know, of all the things- fabric postcards. But they are quick, fun and full of suprise that isn’t expensive to mail or hard to find a place to put the new treasure.
I’ve got a few instructions and then lots of example pictures. So get your hand on that mouse and start scrolling.
Let’s talk construction.
You will need:
* Peltex or Timtex. Whatever— something that is stiff, sort of thickish and fusible on at least one side. Both is prefered. I found mine at joann stores.
* Fabric for the front
* Embellishments (see further down explanations. just depends on theme and idea)
* Paper for the back -prefer cardstock- or you can use fabric also
* Stamp or design for back writing area
* Permanent pen for writing your little note.
* Use a new needle. It will dull quick after these guys so get rid of it when finished. Lots of paper, fusible and thickness just kills it off.

Let’s talk rules:
* nothing thicker than 1/4 inch on those cards. The postmaster will yell at you.
* make sure you use correct postage….they won’t be delivered -or will at the expence of the reciever, and the postmaster will yell at you
* If you are worried about the machines ‘eating’ your postcard use a clear envelope. Everyone can still see the wonderful card you made, and it keeps everything on it safe and sound.

Let’s talk assembly:
* Cut your peltex 4 inch X 6 inch. Cut the back the same size.
* Cut your front fabric just larger than this measurement. You can trim it later. If it slips while ironing you won’t cry too.
* Start playing around with placement and embellishments.
* Use fabric, paint, crayons or whatever else. You are just designing the FRONT of the postcard only. Play around with different mediums.
* When you have the look Use fusible webbing when ready to assemble those pieces and keep them in the right place.

* You will want to iron all these down if using the fusible web. DON’T ADD ANY BUMPY STUFF! You will do this AFTER you get all these pieces down.
* Add all the bumpy stuff now: buttons, charms, netting with beads, fluffy thread, embroidery, quilting. All the thread will be on the wrong side and won’t show once you get the back on.
* fuse the front and peltex to the back side.
* Trim around all edges so everything is nice and flush.
* Using a zigzag, decorative, or a simple straight stitch -sew along the outside edge. Keeps the parts together and makes the edge nice and neat.

* Stamp the back with a postcard marking, or simply draw a line.
* Write your wonderful, short and sweat message and don’t forget those addresses.
Let’s talk examples and ideas:

Stamping and marking the backside–

Quilting and fancy machine stitching-

Shakers- Use toule (sp) or thin netting. Before stitching the last seam stick confetti or seed beads inside. Then seal. You can also place pressed flowers, ribbon, thread, string, anything loose inside and the netting keeps them there.

Pieced blocks. Great way to use up scraps, or leftover lost blocks.

Painted- watercolor pencils, acrylic, or melted crayons. Use permanent markers for outlining if needed.

Pictures. Print on fabric paper- or not. Stitch down the edges to keep them in place. You can also use old greeting cards or vintage pictures the same way.

Fancy ribbon or fuzzy thread.

Bead work- stitch, glue or rhinestone away. You can also use ‘cheater’ beaded fabric.

Glitter. Use glitter glue, sprinkle dust or glitter markers. Just give a little touch or go all out crazy like.

Misc. stuff. Plastic spiders, Pockets for the kangaroo and hawaiian shirt, silk flowers or leaves, doilies.

Sandpaper (fun), scrapbooking do dads, fancy buttons, plastic canvas. tinsel pipecleaners, tinsy bells.

Embroidery. Stitch it yourself or use machine or even iron on patches. Fussy cut fabric prints, or make your own designs.

Themed swaps: laundry day, ocean- seaside, sock monkey,

 

Would you like to make your own messenger bag? Check out the shop for the pattern.

AND a Conversation pdf. What is that you ask? Well, It is Vintage style postcards that have been sized for American Girl Dolls. They need to send things to each other don’t they? Sure they do.
The pdf will include 6 postcard sized ‘themed’ pictures. A few stamps, scratch paper template, an envelope template, and to carry all the goods……a messenger bag that she can wear!

If you make a postcard or have done some in the past…leave a comment with a link. we would love to see some more chatting goodies.

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  1. urbancraft

    25 August

    you make the postcards seem easy but watch me take 5 trys before I get one good enough to send. In any case, I am in for the postcard swap.

  2. Whosies

    25 August

    sure. you'll do just fine. that goes for the rest of everyone else too.

  3. tracy

    28 August

    hello! my gal at urban craft pointed me your way- i'd love to join the postcard swap fun, too!

  4. Marilyn

    3 September

    How fun–you did a good job on your tutorial! I saw one of mine that I swapped in another group. How fun for me, Oh, I want your lighthouse cards. I love lighthouses.–Did you know that?

    And just so you know–past experience speaking, if you use the clear envelopes they will charge you extra postage if you live in Bountiful Utah and some other cities–makes me cranky!!

  5. Nancy

    4 September

    all very fun and amazing stuff – and even if i don't participate i simply love it!

  6. Carol Polter

    24 March

    I went to a workshop 6 days ago and my mind keeps drifting back to fabric postcards. My head is spinning with thoughts of using my fabric, trims, quilt stuff, ribbons etc. to do these cards! I want to retire from work so I can stay home and play all day every day. By I must drag myself to the Middle School and spend my day with the 13 years olds for 2 more years. Your ideas are fabulous! Maybe I will get into the trading too someday.

  7. Carol Polter

    25 March

    I went to a workshop 6 days ago and my mind keeps drifting back to fabric postcards. My head is spinning with thoughts of using my fabric, trims, quilt stuff, ribbons etc. to do these cards! I want to retire from work so I can stay home and play all day every day. By I must drag myself to the Middle School and spend my day with the 13 years olds for 2 more years. Your ideas are fabulous! Maybe I will get into the trading too someday.

  8. YBA @ www.QuiltingBeginners.com

    8 December

    These postcards are really cute. I worried about them getting schmutzy in the mail though until I saw the plastic envelopes. I can see these being used as Christmas Tree ornaments too. Very clever.

  9. Mandy Currie

    23 January

    Just love the idea of stitched postcards and would like to follow this.

  10. MamaMay

    5 June

    I found you via Sarah

  11. JaquiSmi

    8 September

    Just stumbgled across this site, Is it still active and are you taking new sign-ups?

  12. posse boss

    9 September

    no– this one is closed. but maybe sometime in the future i will do another one.

  13. ShereeSews

    12 February

    Your article is full of fun and inspiration! I really enjoyed reading it. I too, love to sew and swap fabric postcards, but I start out a bit larger 4.5 x 6.5, then after all the fusing and embellishments I use a rotary cutter to trim them to 4×6 size. I feel that I get neater edges this way.

    I am new to blogging, but maybe you will enjoy my blog dedicated to sewing fabric postcards!

    Thanks, ShereeSews
    http://sewfabsew.blogspot.com

  14. Becky

    15 February

    Thanks Sheree! That’s a great idea to start a bit bigger and then trim down.

  15. Cheryl

    3 September

    These are so great! I’ve never made one. I guess I’m intimidated by them, worried I’ll make a mess!

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