Looking to add a little oomph to your stitcheries? Wanting to have more color but not wanting to satin stitch until you get a sore wrist? Then consider crayon tinting as a fun, easy alternative to fill in your outlines and add shading and dimension to your project.
- design for stitching
- fabric (preferrably a tight-weave cotton) larger than your image
- assorted colored Crayola crayons (other brands may not work as well)
- extra fabric for padding
- embroidery floss
- embroidery hoop
1. Pre-wash your fabric to remove sizing. The color will adhere better to washed fabric. Transfer your design to fabric, tracing with a pencil or using a transfer pen or carbon paper. Make sure your lines are well defined because they will determine the outlines for your coloring.
2. Some sites recommend fusing your fabric to a stabilizer or freezer paper to make coloring easier. I simply added a few layers of fabric underneath as padding and put them all in an embroidery hoop. Much easier, I think. If you find that you're not getting enough of a hard surface underneath to color well, you can always put a solid object underneath and move it around to provide resistance as needed. Whoa! Did that sound scientific or what?
3. Using gentle, one-way strokes, apply color. Having padding will help reduce hard marks or streaks. The rest is up to your imagination! Layer on color until you are happy. I like to have my coloring darker at the edges where the embroidery will be. Just my preference, though.
4. When you're done coloring, take your fabric out of the hoop and sandwich it between two layers of paper, back side up. Iron with a warm iron. The paper will absorb the excess melted crayon, preventing your ironing board from getting all icky.
5. Once set and cool, put your colored design back in the hoop and start stitching! It's recommended to hand wash embroideries with crayon tinting to keep the colors from fading.
When tracing your pattern onto the fabric, be sure to use a line that will be darker than your coloring so you'll be able to follow it when you're ready to stitch. I traced using a light purple and lost a lot of lines after coloring!
If you're raiding your kids' crayon box for this project, make sure the crayons have clean tips. Otherwise, you might end up with a splotch of green on a flesh-colored leg. Ahem. That would be me.
Hope this inspired you to try something new! If you need some inspiration, here's some crayon tinted lovelies via Flickr. Thanks for stopping by!