Tile coaster trials and tribulations

Coaster mess

Coaster mess

I decided to go ahead this week with the making of the tile coasters from my artwork.  I had spent some time researching various techniques on line and decided to just go ahead and try it.  I bought ink jet transfer paper and the travertine tile, everything required except the sealant.  And the process did not go as planned.  What a mess.  You know, I am fairly good at following directions, but evidently something was missing in the translation.  I am working with a method that uses ink jet transfer paper made for t-shirts.  It seemed a straight forward process when I read about it.  But……

The crinkled up one was heat treated with my hair drier to set the colors and then soaked in water to remove the backing as per instructions.  I then placed it on a tile soaked with rubbing alcohol and left it to dry.  And voila, the next morning – not what I planned.  Dried, crinkled, non-adhered, non ink transferred image on tile.  Since I had followed the directions and it didn’t work – at all – I went on to the the next method.

Evidently it is harder to iron on a transfer sheet than I thought.  Some said to gently move the iron over the surface, but when I did that, it seriously smeared.  Even when I held it firm, it moved some.  In case you can’t tell I used the cheetah and the polar bear.

Another suggested prewarming the tile with the iron so it wouldn’t have to be heated so long.  Maybe that is next to try.  I am seriously disappointed.  And I’d seriously welcome suggestions.

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. DixCutler
    Feb 03, 2013 @ 12:45:28

    So maddening when thing go haywire. Been there, done that – way too often. Hope the next effort pays off for you.


  2. timkeen40
    Feb 03, 2013 @ 12:54:43

    If at first you don’t succeed…I know. It is only a good saying after you finally do succeed. Good luck.



  3. Cindy D.
    Feb 05, 2013 @ 21:10:26

    Oh dear! I am sorry to hear about your frustrations but I can totally relate! I started my attempts at making glass tile pendants and ruined several (glue bubbles, arrgh!) before *sort of* getting the hang of it. I actually set them aside about a month ago and maybe I’ll give them another go and we can both look forward to better results! 🙂


    • ruthsartwork
      Feb 06, 2013 @ 08:55:04

      I’ve seen those pendants, Cindy. Sounds like your directions lost a bit in translation too. I did find a book at our library of all places that has given me a few better hints at the process. And I will have several pieces to “waste” now with the waterproofing. I sure my first attempts at that will be no better than the transfer. I guess it is all in the technique.


  4. lesliepaints
    Feb 17, 2013 @ 14:15:30

    I hadf a lot of problems with the inkjet transfers; not in the application but in them lasting on the t-shirt. I like your coasters!


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