In order to make an Ikonart stencil you need something that will block out the light during exposure. The parts of your stencil film that are blocked during exposure will wash away during washout and that is what creates your reusable stencil. Usually we tell people to print their design in black on an inkjet printer or laser printer, but there is another way!
If you own a cutting machine like a Cricut or Silhouette you can cut your design out of vinyl and use that to make your stencil. One of our customers, Jenn Bailey Duval with MoodiChic Jewelry, posted these step-by-step instructions in our Facebook group. This is a great option for anyone who doesn't have a printer or can't get their printer to print their artwork dark enough.
How To Make An Ikonart Stencil Using Vinyl
1. Cut Your Design
Using a Cricut, Silhouette or Brother cutting machine cut and weed your design out of vinyl. Jenn used 631 vinyl in black for this example, but any color vinyl will work. Vinyl is opaque enough that any color will block the light during exposure. It doesn't need to be black.
2. Transfer to Transfer Tape
The background around your design needs to be clear in order to let the light through during exposure, so you will need to transfer your design onto one of our clear printer films. In order to do this you first need to transfer your design to transfer tape.
3. Transfer to Transparent Printer Film
After you design is on the transfer tape you will be able to transfer it over to the transparent printer film that comes in the Ikonart Kit. In this example Jenn used the Laser Printer Film, but either one will work.
4. Expose As Normal
Once you have your vinyl stencil weeded and transferred over to the transparent film you can expose your Ikonart stencil film the exact same way that you would if you printed on the printer film. Lay your vinyl on top of your stencil film the way you want your final stencil to look (so if there are words on your design, you should be able to read them during exposure) and expose for 35 seconds.
5. Soak The Stencil Film
The vinyl will block the light 100% during exposure, so washout should be very easy. You can soak your stencil for a minute before washing it out to make washout even faster.
6. Reveal Your Stencil
And that's it! The parts of the stencil film that were blocked by the vinyl will all wash away during washout leaving you with a reusable silkscreen stencil. After the stencil is 100% dry put it back under the light to post-expose for 2 minutes.
7 & 8. Use Your Ikonart Stencil
Jenn used the stencil she made to screen print a few shirts. She only had to weed the vinyl one time and now she can use her reusable Ikonart stencil multiple times to make multiple different items. Plus she can save the vinyl design that she put on the clear printer film in case she wants to make more of these moon stencils (either for herself or to sell). Jenn used silver Speedball Opaque Fabric Screen Printing Ink for a vintage look on these shirts.
Although printing your artwork using an inkjet or laser printer is certainly faster than weeding vinyl, making your artwork out of vinyl can be a great option for some people. If you have any questions about artwork or making your own stencils using the Ikonart Custom Stencil Kit, please contact us. And if you're not already in our Ikonart Crafters Facebook group, what are you waiting for?! That is where all the fun happens!! :)