Halloween is almost upon us, and I’m still trying to squeeze out every last drop of All Hallow’s Eve decorative juices that I can. What’s a girl to do when she has supplies on hand, the creative itch, and a napping toddler?? Craft, of course!
This quick and easy project came together in no time. I simply did a few edits to an image from Silhouette America’s online store and then printed it out on some printable burlap (yes, there is such a thing, and it’s AMAZING). Now this sassy little witch adds a touch of playfulness and cheekiness to our home. After all, it is fun stirring the pot…. ;)
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- 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of laminated burlap
- Inkjet printer, black ink, & one sheet of printer paper
- Scotch tape
- 8″ x 10″ frame
- Paper trimmer, scissors, and/or Silhouette Cameo
- Scrapbook paper
- Jute twine
The Laminated Burlap
I normally don’t shop at Walmart (I’m a Target gal), however, they do have a pretty decent craft section. That’s just where I found this 3-pack of laminated burlap sheets for only $2.97. These are sized 8.5″ x 11″ and can be used with any inkjet printer just like regular paper.
When I purchased them, I didn’t really have any idea what I was going to do with them, but they ended up in my cart anyway for when inspiration strikes (that tends to happen).
[I’ve seen tutorials floating around the interwebs showing how you can make your own sheets of printable burlap. You just iron a piece of freezer paper to the back of a sheet of regular burlap, but since burlap is not something I normally have on hand, this little pack of ready-to-go printable sheets sounded good to me!]
I usually make one or two trips to Target every week and I always have to hit up the Clearance areas while making my rounds….the only thing better than finding a cute little gem is finding one for a steal, amiright?
Luck was on my side last week because I stumbled upon some great Threshold frames on clearance for 80% off….EIGHTY PERCENT. I had no real need for another frame, but it was such a good deal, I just had to buy it, right? I mean, it would have been a sin not to. That’s what I told my husband at least.
“But honey, it was on saaaale!!”
Let’s just take another moment to fully appreciate what a great deal I received with this frame….ahhh Bullseye, you make my heart sing.
Now that I had a great frame just laying around, it needed to be put to use and start displaying something. I also had this pack of printable burlap that I’d been eager to test out. Hmmmm….they seemed to be destined for a match made in crafting heaven, and my wheels started a’spinnin’.
The Sassy Witch Design
Downloading the Witch: I have some credit in my Silhouette American online account (and it’s burning a hole in my online pocket), so one evening I just started perusing through the Halloween designs. As soon as I saw this file of a sassy little witch brewing some magic in a cauldron, I knew I had to have it! Maybe I see a little of myself in her (although I wish that my waist was that small, that my hair was that long, and that I could rock sky-high heels like that!). For whatever reason, this little lady speaks to me, so I downloaded her then opened her up in Silhouette Studio.
Adding the Phrase: I wasn’t too fond of leaving the cauldron as is though…it was just too much black for my tastes. It was, however, the perfect size to add a little phrase or saying to. I was talking to The Hubs about fun little sayings that would work for this design (he’s a pretty creative fella), and he threw out “It’s fun stirring the pot.” BRILLIANT! I loved it, so I used my text tool and added it overtop the cauldron. I think the message fits this little lady’s personality quite well (as well as my own, *wink wink*).
I ended up doing some editing of the points in “POT,” just to make it fit a little better and take up the entire area of the cauldron.
Before printing on the burlap, I wanted to do a test print on a regular sheet of printer paper, just to make sure everything was sized and positioned correctly. In Silhouette Studio, I changed my paper size to letter (8.5″ x 11″) then created a blue box that was sized 8″ x 10″ since that is the size of my frame opening and I need my witch to obviously fit inside. I then used my Align tool and centered both to the page
Next, I moved my blue box off to the side, then I simply went to File –> Print….
….and then set up my printer settings. For my printer (an Epson XP-600), I just changed it to printing black and white, feeding from the main tray, and Best Quality. Then I hit Print.
My results were perfect! It was centered and sized correctly and everything looked just as I’d intended. Now onto the burlap!
Printing on the Burlap
Since I had a successful test print, I was eager to give the burlap a try! The package doesn’t list any instructions for printing so I figured it must be foolproof and just decided to give it a go. What’s the worst that could happen, aside from destroying my printer and creating a subsequent grumpy husband? Let’s go for it!
Some Minor Technical Difficulties: The burlap has a shiny, waxy coating on one side which is to prevent shredding and fraying, while the other side is left natural (that’s the printable side). I made sure my sheet of burlap was placed in the feeding tray correctly, then I hit Print again.
The burlap started to be fed through just like a regular sheet of paper and I thought to myself “Man, this stuff is just amazing! I can’t believe it’s so easy!”….then my printer sounded like it had transformed into a wild animal and was ferociously attacking its prey. Chaos started to unfold. Screeching and beeping and mechanical noises that should never be heard started pouring out from my printer. This was not good….I really did destroy my printer and I really was going to have a grumpy husband. Ruh-roh.
An alert on my printer’s screen showed that I had a jam (like the crunching hadn’t already given that away), so I had to put on my printer repairwoman hat and take care of the issue (and hopefully keep my husband in the dark about my technical difficulties). It was actually a pretty easy fix, though….*phew!* I just had to pull a drawer out from the back and the burlap sheet came right out.
So apparently I needed to do something to the burlap before sending it to print (instructions would have been nice, Creative Essentials people!).
Preparing the Burlap Sheet for Printing: To solve my problem, I grabbed some Scotch tape as well as my test sheet of printed paper and taped the burlap to the paper in two corners. I made sure the shiny side was face-down against the paper since that was the side that I did not want to be printed. I then placed the edge with the taped corners into my printer’s feed tray so its rollers would now be able to grab onto it and feed it through smoothly (that was my hope at least). I then tried to print again….
….and it worked! The sassy witch printed on burlap just wonderfully.
Trimming the Printed Burlap Sheet to Size
I now needed to trim up my sheet of burlap to fit within the 8″ x 10″ frame. To help me out with not only sizing it correctly but also centering my design, I grabbed the mat that came with the frame. I then placed it overtop my burlap and held both up to my backdoor to act as a sort of shadowbox. I was then able to eyeball the correct placement, and using an ink pen, I marked off each corner. Then I used a paper trimmer to trim up the edges.
Adding the Bunting
Now that my design was printed and trimmed, I thought it would be cute to add a little bunting to hang across the front of the frame, just to add some color and make it a little more playful. I raided my scrapbook paper stash and pulled out some sheets in black, orange, and green that were various designs (stripes, polka dots, and chevrons).
I already had a file for the bunting (the Build a Banner set from Silhouette America) that I used to create a banner for The Cub’s first birthday party, so I just selected the solid triangle for this project. I had to increase the size of the circles, though, so I would be able to feed my twine through for hanging. One by one, I loaded up my selected sheets of scrapbook paper into my Silhouette Cameo and cut out three triangles of each. I didn’t know how many or what combinations I would end up using, but I like having options.
For hanging the bunting, I used some jute twine (also from Walmart), and fed it through my selected triangles. The twine kept wanting to twist back up on itself, so I had to rig up my own method of straightening it out. Check out what I came up with in my kitchen pantry: just a few chip clips, a pair of pliers, and two hours did the trick! :)
Sassy Witch Printed on Burlap Halloween Decor: The Final Product
And here she is: my little sassy witch in all her printed burlap glory, complete with a festive little bunting. I’m truly amazed at how quick and easy this project was (minus my technical difficulties of course….but that sure was a great learning experience for the future!).
I was able to use this cute design from Silhouette America without having to go through the hassle and expense of either making a stencil and hand-printing it or trying to get a vinyl cutout to stick to burlap (that is no easy feat!).
This printable burlap was so easy to use (not to mention inexpensive), and I know with certainty I’ll be using it again for future creations. After all, anything that you can print on paper, you can print on this burlap, so the possibilities for decor and gifts are endless!
If You Enjoyed This….
Make sure you check out my Project Gallery for all my other creations, including lots more fun Halloween projects!
Thanks so much for stopping by!