I can’t even remember what show this was on, but it’s been rolling around my mind for weeks. I see lots of pillows in the antique and design shops with large-lettered words like “MILK” below a cow, or “WOOL” below a sheep. The images are primitive, but the printing is clean and professional. Clearly someone is silkscreening these. Someone in China I suppose.
So I was very titillated by a recent explanation of the process of silkscreening and how easily this can be accomplished with a pair of pantyhose, a bottle of Mod Podge, and some printed or free-hand art.
In summary (and trust me when I say this is all you’ll need), you take a stocking and stretch it over an embroidery hoop and staple it tightly. Place the hoop over an image (preferably something monochromatic) and trace it onto the stocking. Paint Mod Podge in the negative space (that area around – not in – the image) with the stocking side up so that the glue does not stick to the table as it seeps through, and let it dry. Set stocking-side down onto whatever cloth you wish to transfer the image and run a bead of paint (like Deco or Americana acrylic in those small bottles) just above the image. Using a foam brush or similar tool (a size that will cover the image with one stroke) pull this line of paint over the space that doesn’t have Mod Podge and carefully lift the hoop straight up. Voila. You’ve just silk screened.
There’s some finesse to this, and I suggest you start small and practice first. But this is a great way to copy those expensive pillows with surprisingly professional results. You can silk screen your name, or someone’s silhouette, a special date, and any simple image. It’s a one-day, really just a couple-hour or so, project, and like all my stolen ideas, a great personalized gift.
Look on YouTube for several tutorials to find the one that will work best for you. And for fabrics, think out of the box and try silkscreening printed and striped fabrics. Repurposed fabrics such as draperies and tablecloths also make great pillows. Feed sacks, like the one above, can be expensive but I personally love the look. Save money on trims and zippers by shopping thrift stores which usually have a “sewing bin.”