Sunday, April 10, 2011

Quick and Easy Chalk Cloth Tags

How about we start the work week with a little tutorial?  If you haven't checked out Chalk Cloth (aka Chalkboard Fabric, Blackboard Fabric) let me just tell you that it is pretty cool stuff.  You can get it at JoAnn's for about $5.00 a yard.  It's an oilcloth and you can do all kinds of fun projects with it.

Here's one fun project that you can whip up in a jiffy.

What you'll need:  Chalk Cloth (how much depends on how many tags you're making and how big they'll be)
                                 A decently heavyweight canvas (again how much depends on how many and how big.)
                                 Pinking Shears (aka Alligator scissors)
                                 Black Thread

If you bought a big piece of chalk cloth, you might want to cut it down into more manageable squares, like 12x12 or so.  If it's a little wrinkled or creased, you can quickly glide a warm (not cotton hot) iron across the back.  Be careful, it WILL melt!

Cut your chalk cloth into 2x3 rectangles, or whatever size you want them to be.  I have found 2x3 to be a perfect size for tags.  I also use a rotary cutter because it gives straighter edges, but it's not necessary.

Now take your canvas and iron it if you need to.  Then cut it into rectangles that are slightly (like a 1/2 inch on all sides) larger.  Don't worry about even edges, we'll finish trimming later.

Set your machine to a zig zag stitch.  I set my width at 4 and my length at 2.  Zig Zag around all 4 sides.  The chalk cloth may slip slightly, that's why we do the final trimming at the end.

Now all that's left is to trim the edges with your pinking shears!  Pinking shears help to prevent fraying and it looks cute, too.

You will need to prime your chalk cloth before you use it.  This is simple.  Lay the chalk on it's side and rub it all over the surface until it's completely covered.  Wipe clean with a dry cloth.  It's ready!

How you attach your tag is completely up to you.  I just use a little safety pin when attaching it to fabric.  You can turn it into a magnet by using a spray adhesive to attach a thin magnet to the back of the whole tag.  You could also attach a ribbon loop if your planning on hanging it from a drawer knob.  Use your imagination!

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