How to Craft With Oil Cloth

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Oilcloth is a type of fabric with a water-resistant coating. Today's oilcloth is cotton or canvas laminated with a vinyl coating, while vintage oilcloth was cotton or canvas impregnated with linseed oil. Oilcloth lends itself to numerous crafts as it is versatile and easy to work with. One of the perks of working with oilcloth is that it never needs hemming. Another perk is that it is easy to wipe clean. If you cannot find oil cloth you can make your own by stretching canvas over a frame and brushing on three to five coats of linseed oil.

Things You'll Need

  • Oilcloth
  • Scissors
  • #16 needle
  • Paper
  • Rolling presser foot
  • Craft glue
  • Cut out oil cloth using scissors, much as you would most any other cloth. . Use regular scissors if you want to cut a straight edge, or pinking shears if you want a decorative edge that will not fray.

  • Fold the edges under if you want to make a hem, but you do not need to fold under twice to hide raw edges or prevent fraying as with regular fabric. Use a size-16 needle and a longer stitch length to prevent perforations and tearing.

  • Eliminate any trouble with the presser foot of a sewing machine by sewing on the back of the fabric, inserting paper in between the presser foot and the front of the oil cloth or by using a rolling presser foot that will not stick to the oiled side of the fabric.

  • Glue pieces of oil cloth together using a strong craft glue. Refrain from using a high temperature glue gun as the heat may melt some of the coating, although a low temperature glue gun might work just find. Test your project first.

  • Make a variety of crafts using the oil cloth, such as lunch bags, totes, baby bibs, set covers, tablecloths and book covers. Wipe off any spills that may occur using a damp cloth.

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