Cricut Pen Project.
I love using fabric scraps to create small art quilts. Hand-stitching makes each one so unique, and I find it quite relaxing at the end of the day to sit down and “doodle” with thread on fabric. In the past, I’ve experimented with different ways to incorporate imagery on these little fabric collages. I’ve used stamping and photo transfer techniques, but recently thought – what about using the Cricut? Turns out, the Cricut with its gel pens does a great job of creating imagery on fabric scraps.
Cricut and gel pens
Select some fabric scraps for your project. Use a hot dry iron the iron the fabric to ordinary freezer paper (from the grocery store). The freezer paper will provide backing and support to the fabric while the Cricut is drawing on it. Once you’re done drawing, however, the freezer paper peels cleanly off the fabric without any alteration of the hand of the fabric.
Upload your images to Cricut Design Space. Be sure to set the images to “write”. You want the machine to draw the image on the fabric without cutting it out.
Place the fabric backed with freezer paper on the cutting mat. Secure one or more of the edges of the fabric using masking tape as needed.
Load a gel pen in the machine and follow the prompts to make the project.
Remove the fabric from the mat and peel away the freezer paper. Cut or tear the fabric to size for your collage. I like to work with fabric scraps with a textured edge, so I use scissors to make a small cut in the edge of the fabric and then simply tear the piece to size. Lay your fabric pieces on a piece of quilt batting. When you are satisfied with the organization and design, pin the fabric in place.
Sew the fabric scraps to the batting using simple embroidery stitching.
After all the fabric pieces have been secured to the batting, add stitching to highlight imagery or add texture to the collage. Include beads, buttons, charms or any other embellishments that you’d like.
When all your stitching is complete, pin the collage to a piece of backing fabric. Trim the backing fabric to the size of the collage and sew in place using a blanket stitch around all edges of the collage.
Create a hanger from your favorite materials. I used some wool felt and plastic rings to hang and suspend the finished quilt.