Make your own fabric labels for FREE! (Video Tutorial)

I have been wanting to post this video tutorial for a few months now and have finally come around to doing it! You all should be very happy! If you quilt you know that it is VERY important to include a label on the backside of all your quilts. We need this not only to track who made the quilt for future years to come but also so your family members can have the information on the quilt itself years after you’re gone. If you have young children you may want to learn this technique to add your own customized labels to your kids’ clothes, bags, backpacks, blankies, etc.

All you need is some printer paper, freezer paper, a glue stick, and an inkjet printer! Feel free to share the link to my video to anyone you know who will benefit from learning how to make their own fabric labels, for FREE!

It has come to my attention that different inks in the inkjet printers may or may not allow these labels to be printed permanently on your fabric without it having to be treated with a special solution.  I suggest you try this method out on a scrap piece of fabric first.  Heat set it with a dry, hot iron for about 15-20 seconds and then try washing it by hand under the sink with soap and agitating it to see if your ink is one of the ones that won’t set permanently.

Please comment and let me know if you have tried it yourself! I love to hear from you.

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38 Responses to Make your own fabric labels for FREE! (Video Tutorial)

  1. Vickie February 18, 2010 at 4:32 pm #

    Very Interesting – I like the idea of gluing the freezer paper to regular paper, stops that whole shifting thing 🙂

  2. Crafty Gemini February 18, 2010 at 4:49 pm #

    yup! That way you don’t have to deal with the freezer paper corners rolling on you and not feeding smoothly through the printer! Glad you like it! :o)

  3. cropperbea February 19, 2010 at 4:33 pm #

    do you re-use that sheet with the freezer paper on? and also I’d think you have to wait until the glue is dried before sticking it in the printer? wouldn’t want any gunk to get in there…. I’m totally going to try this 🙂

  4. Crafty Gemini February 19, 2010 at 4:40 pm #

    Yes! I file that sheet away in a folder and reuse it every time I need to make a label. As for the glue, I specifically use a glue stick for that purpose. I wouldn’t recommend using a liquid glue unless you made sure it was completely dry. I have also used double sided tape, or an adhesive roller that scrapbookers use. Never had a problem and it works every time! Let me know how it works for you when you try it. :o)

  5. Pam February 19, 2010 at 6:46 pm #

    I tried this technique but found that after a few washings the entire print on the label was gone. I was thinking of trying it again and using the bubble jet set to set the ink next time. Maybe it was the ink in the printer that I used, but heat setting it was supposed to keep the print from fading and it did not.
    Glad it works for you

  6. Crafty Gemini February 19, 2010 at 7:05 pm #

    Pam: That’s terrible! I thought the same thing when I first tried it but made a sample label and washed it several times to make sure before putting it on an actual quilt. Luckily, I never had a problem. You’re probably right that its the ink… sorry it didn’t work for you. :o/

  7. MYPINKRAINBOW May 24, 2010 at 2:08 am #

    Vanessa,
    you are so awesome… thank you for a fabulous lesson, i would like to send you a gift, do you have a post office box ? thanks
    georgia from ohio
    please send me a message through my you tube that way i am sure to get it
    http://www.youtube.com/mypinkrainbow

  8. The Sassy Crafter July 11, 2010 at 11:34 pm #

    Thanks Vanessa! I will try and see if it works with me….=)

  9. Started Young August 13, 2010 at 5:51 pm #

    Wow! This is exactly what I was looking for! But I do have one question… What kind for fabric do you use for printing on?

  10. Crafty Gemini August 13, 2010 at 6:19 pm #

    Started Young: I use regular 100% cotton fabric.

  11. Anonymous April 30, 2011 at 6:18 am #

    This is brilliant! I was wondering if there is something else you can use instead of freezer paper? I live in the uk and I’m not sure if I can get that kind of paper here.

  12. Crafty Gemini April 30, 2011 at 7:28 am #

    I’ve heard craft shops in the UK carry it but others have ordered it on eBay as well. Hope this helps.

  13. sheena abdusshakur May 17, 2011 at 1:50 pm #

    mrsmossify,

    You are so awesome,i just start watching your video’s today and i had to subcribe. Iam a sewer rookie and iam loving it. Thank you for everything that you give on your website and video’s.

  14. quiltingbonnie June 2, 2011 at 6:13 pm #

    I love your tutorial for the labels. A friend from my Quilt guild (Mary), told me all about your tutorial. So easy, can’t wait to try it.

  15. Anonymous July 21, 2011 at 7:01 pm #

    Your tutorials are all awesome. The way you explain everything makes it so easy to learn.Thanks for sharing your wonderful talent with others. ( mspammy)

  16. Anonymous August 3, 2011 at 7:59 am #

    Interesting. Great idea!

  17. Wiona August 18, 2011 at 1:20 pm #

    Hi, is there any particular brand of freezer paper that you use? I live in Northern Ireland and have had to try eBay to get some, not sure which to go for. Also does it matter whether it’s on a roll or on sheets? Many thanks for sharing your talent with us all!

  18. Crafty Gemini August 18, 2011 at 7:25 pm #

    Wiona: I use the Reynolds brand freezer paper… it’s the only one I’ve ever seen in my grocery store. See if this store in the UK delivers to you. They sell the Reynolds brand we use here: http://www.pelennapatchworks.co.uk/reynolds-freezer-paper-roll-1014-p.asp

    It also won’t matter whether it’s on the roll or on sheets. You’ll have to cut them depending on each project you use it for. Good luck!

  19. Wiona August 19, 2011 at 6:53 am #

    Many thank! I checked them out and they do deliver to here. While I was trying to find some I came across the Reynolds brand on eBay uk, longer roll and cheaper(can’t beat that!) than pelennapatchwork, but she does have a lot of other things I’ve been looking for! Thank you so much for taking the time to help me, you have a very generous spirit.

  20. Crafty Gemini August 19, 2011 at 8:28 am #

    Wiona: No problem! Glad to help! :o)

  21. Wiona August 20, 2011 at 2:29 pm #

    Ok, a quick update on how I got on. The ink type is really important. I have cheap compatible ink in my Epson r200 and the ink washed out completely when I tried to give it a gentle hand wash. Then I tried it in my Epson b1100 which has the original inks in it. Worked a charm. To prove to myself it wouldn’t wash out I machined washed it on a 60 degree C cycle. Having five kids there are lots of stains that require a hotter wash. Came out perfect, no fading at all. I’m so happy(can you tell!). Not only can I do quilt labels now but personalised cushions for grandparents, backgrounds for embellishing with embroidery etc. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for opening up a world of possibilities for me.

  22. Crafty Gemini August 20, 2011 at 4:23 pm #

    That’s great news, Wiona! I’m so glad you have a cartridge that will print permanently on fabric. Now you can go crazy experimenting! :o)

  23. meowiefotografie September 26, 2011 at 1:42 am #

    hey there ms vanessa! so glad there are very generous crafters like you to share this wonderful DIY! First of all I live up in the northern province in thailand and we don’t have the luxury of buying things in ebay (costs much on international shipping, etc). Is there any alternatives for this matter? thanks so much!

  24. byLorena September 28, 2011 at 5:39 pm #

    Hola Vanessa! I am fan number one of you! Thank you! I had made labels, and I loved it until i washed them and it has washed out, the ink is gone… My printer is a HP inject and has original inks
    I used them for my child preschool liner’s and rather to sew the labels I have used “a double stick fusible” for appliqué…. What i am doing wrong?

  25. Crafty Gemini October 2, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    meowiefotografie : Unfortunately, I don’t know of any other item you could use and get the same results. Have you tried doing a search to see if any stores or online shops in Thailand carry the freezer paper?

  26. Crafty Gemini October 2, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

    byLorena: Your ink must not be one of the ones that sets permanently on fabric. Did you make sure to heat set it with a dry hot iron? If you did do that step and it still washed out then the only options you would have are to purchase another type of ink cartridge that is still compatible with your printer but that is permanent or purchase a product called Bubble Jet 2000 and treat the fabric with that before printing on it with your current ink. Hope that helps.

    • byLorena March 24, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

      ¡Gracias Vanessa! I didn’t read your message before ;-( I will have a bottle of that at home for projects! xo

  27. kaysee March 22, 2012 at 12:25 pm #

    I love to watch your you tube tutorials; very interesting and easy to follow. I see you using a small iron on some of your sewing projects what kind of iron is it and can it be found in Europe? I am living in Turkey at the moment.Thx

  28. lbdoherty February 26, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

    Hi- have you experimented with prewashed vs. off-the-bolt fabric for this method? I’m wondering if sizing affects the colorfastness of the inkjet inks. (Love your tutorials and posts. Thanks!)

  29. Cheryl August 19, 2013 at 2:24 pm #

    Hey Vanessa :)……….I just tried making these labels……I used a piece of ‘satin’ type fabric, but I ironed it with a dry iron to a piece of freezer paper to eliminate the glue, printed it (inkjet)……then heat set it, again with a dry iron, washed with Dawn, rubbed it in well, and rinsed……..and the type was still there 🙂 YAY!!!

    Thanks for ALL your tutorials Vanessa………you make it all so easy for us and you’re such a joy to watch and listen to……. 🙂

    Cheryl in SoCal 🙂

  30. Sally Monceaux March 24, 2015 at 6:11 pm #

    I made my first fabric label today! Thank you for this easy peasy tutorial!

    • Vanessa Vargas Wilson March 25, 2015 at 9:50 pm #

      Woot! Glad to hear it it. Go you! 🙂

  31. Linda May 18, 2015 at 2:52 pm #

    Hi Vanessa – This tutorial is great. I made a label yesterday – and it’s absolutely perfect. I was worried about the fabric going through my printer, but never fear! It was fine. Thanks for your tutorials and creativity!

  32. Margaret June 12, 2015 at 3:05 pm #

    Hello Vanessa, Is “waved paper” the same as freezer paper?

    • Margaret June 12, 2015 at 3:06 pm #

      sorry, WAX paper

      • Vanessa Vargas Wilson June 13, 2015 at 7:05 pm #

        Nope. Unfortunately, wax paper is totally different from freezer paper. You can find it near the wax paper at the grocery stores or you can order online if you live outside of the U.S.

  33. Sharon Armstrong December 20, 2015 at 10:25 pm #

    Love your tutorials. Just a question, I have seen other ones which suggest pre treating fabric with a fixative. Like bubble jet 2000. Do you feel this is necessary.

    I live in Australia and not sure if we have it here. I don’t want to make a heap of labels only to have the ink run or disappear.

  34. Laurie February 6, 2016 at 1:48 pm #

    @Sharon Armstrong – I have seen blogs where they just mentioned setting the print with a hot iron after printing, like mentioned here. My question is similar to yours, I’m wondering if it matters whether you was to use the bubble jet 2000, or how much longer if any that it will extent the life of the label from repeated washings of a quilt. Vanessa we would like to hear what you like on this matter. Thanks

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