Look What You Can Do With Ink Effects!

By now you are wondering, "What the heck is Ink Effects?" Well, I'll tell you. It's a paint that you brush onto any old paper, let dry, and then iron onto fabric. And I got some from DecoArt!

They sent me some so I could write up a tutorial explaining to the craft world how this amazing new product works. I'm a spokesmodel! For money! See all the pretty colors?

I brushed some onto paper (notice that the colors look different on the paper...you have to go by the color on the top of the bottle to determine what it's going to look like).
And then I cut little rectangles. You can paint anything you want. I just panic at the sight of a blank sheet of paper, so I cut mine up to make nice sharp, interesting lines. Then...I made a dress. Crazy, I know. If you scroll through the past 3 years of this blog, I've never made anything wearable unless you count Christmas stockings or an aluminum foil fascinator. Anyway, a dress. Why not? I deserve a new dress! I used Kwik Sew pattern #3598 and a cotton knit so I could leave off the zipper and facing. Kwik, indeed. 
But because I used 100% cotton, I had to spray on this extra little product. See, the paints work really well on synthetics like polyester, but if you want to transfer onto cotton, you have to prep the fabric with this stuff. Spray it on liberally wherever you want your pattern, but not in front of your closet like this because it's sticky and now my carpet is sticky below my closet. Spread your fabric out on a garbage bag or a sheet or towels or something. Then let the spray dry thoroughly. 
Next I laid out my dress and starting putting my little painted rectangles face down all over it. I started at the neckline and put about 5 on the dress. Covered them with a sheet of paper. Then ironed (no steam) for about 45 to 50 seconds. Hot. Keep it moving because you don't want the steam holes on your iron to show through and mess it all up. 
Then slowly peel the paper off. Exciting!
I was trying to imagine what I'd wear if Talitha Getty and Lily Pulitzer invited me to lunch in Morocco. That was my inspiration. Bohemian socialite time travel North African-style. So anyway...keep adding the rectangles a few at a time. Cover the ones you already transferred with a blank sheet of paper. Iron on the new ones (also under a sheet of paper). 
And peel the papers off. 
Keep going. All the way down the front and around the bottom. Keep going. Start wondering why you chose to make a dress instead of just a pillow or something small. But keep going. Talitha and Lily are waiting...
and this plain white dress will never do. 

Ahh, Moroccan cous cous is served!

Learn more about DecoArt Ink Effects:


  1. Katie, I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!!! And your deck seat! And the lanterns! All so perfect! Someone at some Dress-Up-Right seminar (it was some self-improvement thing the entire school staff was signed up to attend) once said that if one's dress was lovely but one didn't look especially flattered in it, people would just comment on the beauteous outfit. But if the dress was lovely and made the person look great as well, people would comment on how amazing the person looked. So here: Katie, you're gorgeous!!!!

  2. LiEr! I thought about you the whole time I was making it!!! When I skipped the facings and the zipper and ended up just sewing 3 pieces together because I was too scared to do it the real way, I thought, "LiEr would be soo ashamed of me!" You are the sewing/crafting/writing master.

    Please, everyone, see what I mean at ikatblog.com. You will learn so much and laugh the whole time!

  3. this is beautiful! what a neat product!

  4. What a beautiful dress- you make Ink effects look so easy to use! Excellent spokesmodelling skills :)

    I just wanted to say, I've been reading your blog avidly for a few months now (but haven't commented before- sorry!), and you've truly inspired me to be more creative with my home decor. I spent this last weekend painting my craft storage dresser after getting some serious furniture-envy from seeing all the beautiful hand-painted furniture you've made for your house :)(If you want to take a peep you can see it here - http://hooklineandsinkher2.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/staycation-part-2-crafty-time.html )

    Thank you so much for your blog- the updates on Ms. Norwood and the intern really make me giggle

    Katie xx

  5. I can really see myself wearing something like this. Thanks for sharing, it's gorgeous!

  6. Wow, imagine using all my fancy die cuts and punches with that stuff! Your dress is totally awesome. You should wear it when you go to lunch with your BFF Tori!


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