Friday, June 25, 2010

Frugal Friday: Tacky Textiles

This week on the TES forum Living in the Positive posted a cute tutorial from Studio Calico with instructions on using their new FabRips for the binding on a mini book…super cute! And when I saw the tutorial I had the perfect project in mind! But, alas, I have no FabRips….what is a frugal girl to do?

Well, make my own, of course.

Now, never having seen these fabulous little embellies in person, I am just guessing about how I can make my own...

Gather up various scraps of fabric, at least 12” long and of varying widths. If you don’t have any fabrics lying around, you can get some cute small pre-cut pieces from Wal-Mart (21” X 18”-fat quarter) for about $1.00, or try using up some old jeans or kids clothes that aren’t good enough to donate to charity.

Since fabric weave is loose, a liquid adhesive isn’t really a good option for this project, so I used my Xyron 500 machine.

I simple cut two strips of fabric 2” X 12” and one strip 1” X 12”, placed them all down on the 5” bed of the Xyron and ran them through the machine. The 2” wide strips are destined for the mini album, and so as to not waste space, I also passed a 1” strip through that will be for my embellie stash. The only limit on the width of the strips is the machine whose bed is 5” wide. As you will see in my sample project, I also made on strip 5” wide.

While you are running the fabric through the machine, keep slight tension on the fabrics to make sure they pass through straight and not overlapping each other….but don’t pull too hard or you may stretch the fabric.

After you have run the fabric through the machine, be sure to rub over the top of the fabric really well. I used a squeegee to make sure all of the adhesive transferred nicely to the fabric.

Then simply peel the strips from the backing, don’t throw the backing out, it is fantastic release paper for other frugal projects.

Here is my sample project:

This mini album is to show off my “10 Summer Photos to Take Right NOW” pictures (this is a free class from Big Picture Scrapbooking…check it out!)

My mini is 6” square, cut from 12” sheets of chipboard/book board and hinged as in the instructions from Studio Calico.

Yellow polka-dotted hinge...

I love how the pages lay flat...

And pink polka-dots...

So was the experiment worth it? Here is the tally:

Cost: I had everything on hand…but a fat quarter of fabric is about $1.00 and the refill for the Xyron 500 is $10.00 (from Wal-Mart), making one 5” X 12” sheet about $0.76. The FabRips from Studio Calico are $5.49 for two 6”X9”sheets of rip-able fabric in nine patterns.

Cats Annoyed: 1 (Clyde is a bit skittish and he did not like the squeaky sound of the Xyron machine!)

Time: Super fast…only a few minutes picking fabric, cutting the strips and running them through the machine.

Skill Level: Basic

So there it is, homemade tacky textiles! Easy Peasy…and Cheap! Cheap!


  1. I have never heard or seen these before. But these are really cute. I just used book binding from a local book binding store. And he gave me a bunch for free. Ya I am frugal too. Even though my family calls me cheap like its a bad word teehee.

  2. I did this with my 9" Xyron Creative Station and cover the entire front, back and binding of a binder I made from chipboard. Worked great! I am going to try using the strips for my inside binding cause I think it sounds awesome! Thanks for the inspiration~!