Monday, November 29, 2010

Redhead Review: Claudine Hellmuth Sticky Back Canvas

I was poking around my local stamp store when I came across Claudine Hellmuth's Sticky Back Canvas from Ranger, Inc. It's been available for quite a while now, but I hadn't come across it yet so I decided to try it out. I picked up a package of the Natural 8"x 11".

I am a long-time cross-stitch and embroidery nut, so I have tried out stamping on various types of fabrics before with moderate to disastrous results. According to the product description on the package, this canvas will take inks, markers, dyes and paints as well as run through most ink jet printers. It's archivally safe and acid-free. Now, that I had all the facts, I went poking around to see how people used this canvas.

On the Crafty Chica blog, I saw that she used it to decorate candles. On the Ellen Hutson blog, The Classroom, there was a gorgeous project using sticky back canvas with paints. I even checked out a Tim Holtz video where he showed how to use Imaginisce's i-Top tool with canvas to create custom brads.

Obviously, Claudine Hellmuth has created many great videos on using this product including how to do an image transfer with sticky back canvas. Claudine even made a fabulous necklace using this versatile medium.

For my own project, I decided to try out making a scrapbook page with fabric elements. I had just taken some candid shots of my daughter absorbed in a book. I love how she looks cute and focused all at the same time while lost in a novel. To compliment these pictures, I picked up my Relish Reading stamp plate from Rogue Redhead Designs.

The first "test" was to see how clearly the images stamped.

Using Timber Brown Stazon, I got a very clear and detailed image.

As I love to use alcohol ink markers, I decided to try out my copic markers and color in the image. After matching my colors to my pictures, I used a light touch and colored as normal.

I could even layer color to give a nice shaded effect.

While the colors are a bit deeper than when colored on paper, I did notice that they did dry slightly lighter after a few minutes. Fabulous!

I then began to construct my scrapbook page. I matted my photos in a nice deep brown and then I stamped a flourish onto the pictures to give a little interest and to give them a common design element.

Of course, I don't use my real pictures, so this works well. I don't think I would be as quick to stamp onto one-of-a-kind photos. I print out copies on good quality 28 lb. paper (that way they absorb the ink) rather than photo paper so that I can stamp on them or distress them if I want and not feel guilty.

As often plunge boldly into creating without too much thought to medium, I cavalierly decided to try and trim my fabric image with my paper cutter. Yup, you guessed it! Paper cutters are for paper not fabric. The paper backing cut cleanly but the fabric pulled a little.

To compensate, I marked my cut lines with pencil using a ruler and then cut my pieces out with scissors...yes, those things that you can use for fabric and paper.

Not to be deterred from foolish behavior, I also tried to punch out a heart-shape with a hand punch. I had seen a few projects that ran sticky back canvas through a die cut machine, so I figured I would give it a shot.

My punch completed the first cut, but did not like it at all when I tried a second. I decided I should stick to actual die cut machines or stick with my scissors.

On the upside, the protective covering over the sticky back of the canvas peels easily off of the fabric with no muss and no fuss.

I like how the final page turned out. My daughter was wearing one of her favorite rock t-shirts when I photographed her. Unfortunately, it is a very unusual color. I used the color sparingly and focused on the blue of her chair and the blue on the walls behind her.

As always, I was just about done when I made a huge goof. Never work with adhesive destined for a single element when your layout is still on the work surface all vulnerable and defenseless.

I accidentally dropped my ribbon with its double-sided tape already exposed down on my layout after I had placed my pictures. That's why my daughter has a lovely flower in her hair in the bottom photo! Bad fortune is the mother of invention.

All in all, I really liked using the canvas! The sticky back is not so sticky that it cannot be repositioned, a total plus for me. It also takes an image beautifully and I can color on it. One take away I did learn was not to try and use it in ways for which it was not intentioned! I really do have to start reading directions.


  1. I love the way you used the stamps on your layout.

  2. Most creative of you and the end result is amazing. Happy creating...

  3. beautiful! thanks for trying it out and posting it on your blog!

  4. Great layout! I like working with the sticky back canvas also! It has so many possibilities with what you can use on it!

  5. Thanks for the thorough and thoughtful review - I need to crack up my package and give it a try. Your page turned out beautifully!


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