Ahoy there landlubbers, scurvydogs and sprogs!
We be gettin excited for Pirates Ahoy family fun day this Sunday. So much so that our craft spot this ere month be dedicated to puttin a swashbucklin pirate print on everythin!
A tote, bandanna or flag as well, this ere creative caper be an excellent activity for celebratin pirates any time.
If ye be without the doubloons to get ye a scurvy silkscreen, ye can use a simple sponge roller for your pirate print instead.
To make a Stencil
- Ezi-cut stencil paper or a glossy piece of cardboard (we used a cardboard poster)
- A craft knife
- Cutting mat or piece of thick cardboard to protect the table
- A window or a lightbox
- A simple pirate design printed to A5 size (we used our Pirates Family day graphic)
To print onto
- A calico tote bag
- A fabric bandanna
- A flag (small rectangle of scrap fabric, PVA glue and a chopstick)
- Or anything you like really…
To print with
- Paint tray
- Sponge Roller
- Scraps of cardboard
- Masking tape
- Fabric printing inks (proper inks like Permaset are essential for silkscreen printing. Any fabric paint is fine for roller prints. We used fluoro red permaset ink for both)
- An apron and a hand wipe (for when things get messy)
Place your stencil paper over your pirate graphic print out on top of a lightbox or a window. Trace your design onto the stencil paper.
TIP: Choose a simple pirate design that will work well in a single colour print (like our picture does). Avoid anything with lots of small fine lines. The easiest types to cut out will be silhouette or vector graphics.
TIP: These next two steps need a grown up to help.
Check your design is okay to cut out. Shade in all the areas where you are cutting out the paper to make the stencil. If there are any free floating shapes (like a circle within a circle) add a little tab so they can be anchored onto the background stencil paper.
Cut out your stencil with a craft knife. Make sure you place your design on top of a piece of cardboard or a cutting mat so you don’t scratch the table.
To screen print: (if you are roller printing skip to Step 8)
Place the stencil on the flat side of the silkscreen frame and tape down with masking tape. Turn it over to lay the screen flat side down on top of your bag/ flag fabric or bandanna
Dab some fabric printing ink at the top and bottom of the design on the screen.
Hold down one corner of the screen firmly with one hand. With your other hand drag your squeegee at a 45 degree angle down the screen and up again. You should be able to see the fabric paint has gone through the screen evenly to cover the design. If not, squeegee one or two more times at most. If you have a helper they can hold down the screen while you use two hands for the squeegee
TIP: sleeves rolled up and aprons on! This is where it gets messy!
Remove your screen to reveal your fabulous pirate print.
TIP: when you finish, make sure you wash your screen and squeegee thoroughly before they dry
Try the print again on a different piece of fabric. To make the scrap fabric into a pirate flag just paint some pva glue on half the length of a chopstick and wrap the corner of the flag around over the glue.
To print with sponge rollers:
Place your stencil down on top of your fabric. Tape in place with masking tape.
Add some fabric printing ink to your roller and start rolling gently over the stencil. Once it is all covered in paint you can lift off the stencil to reveal your print.
And there you have it, a freebooter’s flag, a bandanna fit for a buccaneer or a treasure tote ready to take home the booty in. Shiver me timbers!