Have you ever wonder how some people can transfer images to fabric and wood surfaces at home? Ever heard of Citra-Solv? I bet some of you have it in your own kitchen! It is a natural cleaner and degreaser which works AWESOME when cleaning the kitchen, but it is also a great way to transfer images to fabric and wood surfaces. You don’t believe me? Here is my proof and give it a try you too!
I found it at Vitamin Cottage-Natural Grocers here in Denver years ago, our Whole Foods didn’t carry it. But many natural food stores carry it and even some chain supermarkets stock it with their cleaning supplies. You can also buy it from Amazon.
A bottle of this concentrate will last you FOREVER! You water it down when you use it to clean and use full strength for transfer projects. The bottle says the fumes are harmless, but I have completely gotten ill and headachey from smelling them, so be sure to have proper ventilation when you use it.
I wanted some rustic and simple letters for my son’s vintage airplane room walls so, I had my husband copy a reverse image of this (from Graphics Fairy) at work and used Citra-Solv to transfer parts of it to the wood.
Just tape your reversed image upside down on the wood.
Paint it with a bit of Citr-Solv concentrate, don’t go nuts it is strong stuff. I start with a little and add more if I need it to get a good transfer.
Then, rub the letters lightly, while peeking under to be sure they are transferring.
On this piece I had to rub pretty hard and apply a decent amount of the Citra-Solv, but again start of gently and apply more pressure as needed. With gentle rubbing I got this:
So I pressed really hard and got this:
I have done this a few times, and for me it works best on non-shiny and/or scuffed up surfaces. It also did not work with a print right from my printer – it needed to be from the b/w copier. It also didn’t work with copies from the color copier, but I think it depends on the printer.
I had some shabby looking letters and then painted the piece with glaze tinted with wood stain.
AHHH, I really like it right above his door. He loves to lay in bed and point to letters and sing the ABC’s.
I think this is definitely a practice makes perfect activity. Just the right amount of Citra-Solv, with just the right copy, on just the right surface, with just the right amount of burnishing. It really is easy though.