DIY Cosmetic Bags with EasyWeed® Electric & EasyWeed® Stretch Rose Gold
New Rose Gold HTV is every metallic lovers dream! Whether you choose EasyWeed Electric or Stretch you can decorate common garment fabrics as well as felt, burlap, and even faux leather! Since rose gold always makes me feel glam, I decided to add a pretty pink sheen to some faux leather cosmetic pouches.
While most real leathers will do fine applied at the standard 305°F, like these journal covers from PersiaLou, faux leather is almost always heat sensitive. What does that mean? If you use too much heat you can end up melting, burning, or discoloring the material. Just like I did when I tested applied the rose gold with an iron on the “Cotton” setting. It became quite clear that I’d need to dial back my temperature for round 2.
If you’re ever unsure if an item is heat sensitive, get two just in case your first attempt ends up like mine. But I’m sure you want to know…
How Do I Prevent Faux Leather from Melting and Discoloring?
To put it simply:
- Lower Temperature
- Higher Press Time
- Consistent Pressure
The first and second requirements are easy enough to fulfill. Set your heat press to 280°F and add 5-10 seconds additional pressing time to make up for the lower heat. Did you know you can press Siser® heat transfer vinyl lower than 280°F? We don’t recommend it too often since the pressing time will get pretty drawn out, but it’s good to know for heat sensitive materials!
Since all iron settings range in temperature it’s best to start low and bump up the temperature if the HTV is refusing to stick. I found the “Polyester” setting had enough heat to apply the HTV without harming the faux leather.
However, the third component can be tough to accomplish with an iron simply due to human error. Pressing on one side of the iron more firmly than the other will leave you with spots that are not applied enough and others that are over applied. This is why a heat press will give you best results when working with faux leather… and any material really!
No matter what your heat application tool of choice is, there’s one accessory you always want when decorating faux leather. A heat transfer cover sheet may seem plain but it works double duty protecting your upper platen (or iron plate) and the item you’re applying on. You can also use parchment paper (like for lining baking sheets) or a thin cotton cloth (like a tea towel or pillow case.)
What am I protecting the platen from you ask? If you’re HTV no longer has a carrier (think first HTV applied in a multi-layer project) adhesive residue can transfer to the platen on the second press if there’s not a cover sheet to block it. Additionally, errant pieces of HTV can stick to the platen, as well as dyes released from the fabric (like the photo below.) All these things can get transferred to projects down the road if they’re stuck to your upper platen, so it’s best to keep it clean by protecting it!
Speaking of carriers, my final tip is to press the material for just a couple seconds (what we call “tacking”) at first and peel the carrier hot. You may have a lifting edge or two but that’s ok, because the next step is to cover everything with a heat transfer cover sheet and press for the remaining time. This method removes the risk of a box outline from the carrier impressing itself into the soft faux leather.
When the HTV is applied correctly it will take on the pebbly texture of the faux leather. Rose Gold looks beautiful in EasyWeed Electric or EasyWeed Stretch, and for most projects you can use them interchangeably. However, if the fabric has 5% or more spandex you’ll want to go with Stretch for best results.
I bet you can’t tell which one is Electric and which one is Stretch! Pin this post, so when you decorate faux leather you’ll be armed with all the best tricks!