DIY Fabric Tags / Labels for Your Sewing Projects | TUTORIAL

I back my cotton fabric labels with denim to help stabilize them

I thought I would share how I make my fabric tags for my purses. The way I used to make them using iron-on transfer paper and ribbon.

They were kind of cute because the way I sewed the ribbon back sometimes made it look like a little scroll banner and not to mention I always have ribbon of some sort on hand. Although, I always hated how you could see the white of the negative space around the logo and words.

Also iron-on transfer paper isn't very permanent, it's good for a while but it wrinkles and fades away eventually. So I looked for an improved way to do this and came across this ingenious idea. I looked to different tutorials and now this is basically what I do:
  1. You will need freezer paper, a piece of fabric (thin fabric is best, like a lightweight cotton), a piece of regular paper that fits through your printer well (for me it's an 8.5" x 11"), scissors (or rotary cutter and board, if you have that and want to be more precise), iron, computer and printer.

  2. Take your fabric and iron it out if it's not already pressed.

  3. Take your sheet of paper and use it as a stencil to cut out your fabric into that shape/size. This is when you could just use the measurements of the paper and use your rotary cutter with board or like quilter's cutting tools for precision.

  4. Place your fabric under the freezer paper, with the shiny side touching the wrong side of the fabric. Iron on a low-medium setting. Don't make it too hot or you'll cause too many wrinkles and/or bubbles. You want to keep the sheets as flat as possible but you also want the freezer paper to stick to the fabric.

  5. I use Adobe Illustrator for this but use whatever program you like. I open my tag design (in CMYK color mode) onto an art board of the same size as the fabric/freezer paper sheet. I space out copies of the design giving them some room around each other for when I go to sew them, the seams won't interfere with anything. As you can see I encircled the design with a gray border to give a better visual of space needed. I later delete it so it won't print. You could leave it though so you know exactly where to cut if you're cutting them out individually.

  6. Fill your page with as many tags as possible. I use Ctrl+Shift+M, that gives you a Copy button that you'll want to click, third from top. Use it once. Then Ctrl+D will repeat the last transform. Now you're ready to print. In your printer settings just let it know your using some other specialty paper.

  7. Your page should print nicely. If some tags have ink smears, it was likely because the sheets weren't flat enough for the printer but that's okay you can discard those pieces.

  8. Cut out your tags before peeling away the freezer paper. I think it's easier that way but it's up to you. That's it, now you have tags/labels you can use for all your sewing projects. You can pretty much use this process for any design you'd like printed onto a piece of fabric. This process definitely beats iron-on transfer paper, it looks that much better and professional. If you want to save your ink though you could just have a custom fabric made with your tag design repeated on it. Check out sites like Spoonflower and Modern Yardage. They print your custom designs onto fabrics of your choice. Or of course just have custom labels made...that's obviously the most professional thing you can do. I think though if you have everything on hand to make these yourself it's pretty affordable and a great solution especially if you're just starting out with your handmade biz.