In this article, I have collected videos and links to give you a complete guide, so you will be ready to join tens of thousands of quilters in more than 65 countries who are printing on fabric with their Inkjet printers to get faster, more precise results with Inklingo using safe ink colors.
The Complete Guide to Printing on Fabric with your Inkjet
Quilters! This article is for you, if you ever need or would benefit from having marks on fabric for
- cutting lines
- sewing lines
- seam endings
- placement lines
- quilting lines
I think that includes ALL of us—every quilter!
Printing on Fabric with your Inkjet—for Everything!
Appliqué? Hand piecing? Machine piecing? Quilting designs?
You can easily and precisely mark everything you need with your ordinary Inkjet printer, printing a maximum of 8.5 inches wide and with the ink you already have.
Inklingo (US Patent 7,814,832) makes it possible with hundreds of downloadable PDFs—and more on the way!
This short video shows my best tips for preparing fabric sheets for printing.
This short video explains the benefits of having precise, accurate lines on the fabric.
Inspiration struck more than 20 years ago when I was teaching hand piecing and looking for a way to make it faster and more precise to prepare the fabric shapes for sewing—but the effects reach far beyond just hand piecing, to machine piecing, appliqué, quilting designs and more.
Print with the ink you already have
How do I know the ink is safe?
In every Inklingo shape collection there is a Test Page, so you know which colors of ink in YOUR printer will not bleed and show on the front. It is even better when the ink washes out completely but it can stay in the quilt forever.
Details in the Top 10 Tutes on the blog: How to test Inkjet ink on fabric
What kind of printer is best?
Any ordinary Inkjet printer is good for Inklingo. You can probably use whatever you have already but if you do need to buy one, you do not need to spend a lot.
FAQ about printers on the website
The most important feature is in the printer software—the ability to print Custom Page Sizes like this one (above) for Judy Martin’s Waltzing Matilda. This is a “combo” layout that allows you to print the octagon, squares and triangles on one sheet of fabric/freezer paper cut 6.25 x 9.75.
Judy’s design has been popular for many years and it has never been easier to make. There are many examples on Pinterest like these.
For Jinny Beyer’s Mariner’s Whirl—and all other shapes—the Inklingo PDF illustrates Suggested Custom Page Sizes (above).
You can check the printer manual online to be sure the software for a particular model allows you to print Custom Sizes. (Almost all do.) One of the reasons many of us prefer Canon (no affiliation) is that their software makes it especially easy to set custom sizes.
Luckily, you can probably pick up an Inkjet on sale for under $50 US. You would want to spend more if you wanted to print photos. Inklingo uses a tiny amount of ink, so if Inklingo is your primary use for the Inkjet, the ink will last a long time. The price of the ink is not an issue.
Does Printing on Fabric with Your Inkjet waste fabric?
Inklingo layouts work with an ordinary Inkjet printer that only prints 8.5 inches wide. However, I draw all of the layouts 13 x 19 instead of 8.5 x 11 because it gives much more flexibility to print exactly the number of shapes I need without wasting fabric.
You might be like me and assume that a wide-format printer would be fabulous for printing big sheets of fabric. I was wrong!
13 x 19 was too big for my ironing board so it was hard to get a good bond between the fabric and the freezer paper without bubbles. When I did get an occasional jam (very rare), it was a lot of fabric to get out of the printer and clean up to print again. I discovered it was much better to print two small sheets of fabric than one huge one.
Keep it simple!
Getting Started Printing on Fabric with Your Inkjet
This is all you need to start printing now.
Quilt fabric – Scraps will do for now!
Printing on Fabric with Your Inkjet and more than 200 Inklingo Shape Collections
What shapes are available?
Shop There is a looooong list under the Shop tab on the website.
Index of Shapes under the Support & Goodies tab.
More Cool Links
Top 10 Tutes on the blog (printing on dark fabric, avoiding jams, etc.)
Inklingo Quiz (Just for fun)
This short video about Joseph’s Coat is one example of the MANY designs you can make.
Inklingo is all about making quilting more accessible WITHOUT buying a lot of extras like a bigger ironing board or a bigger printer or expensive machines, paper pieces and other do-dads. This is one of those rare cases where it is better to use what you have already! Nice, eh?
I hope a few seconds of this video will make you laugh. (Turn your speakers on!)
Questions or comments are welcome!
Thank you for visiting.
Linda & Monkey