23 April 2013

Painted fusible webbing

 Have you wanted to try using painting fusible webbing in your textile work but didn't know how? Let me show you how easy it is!
Sorry, 21cm x 30cm

I made this small quilt in response to the Australian Prime Minister’s apology to the Stolen Generation. It has multiple layers – hand-dyed yellow and red fabric, painted fusible webbing, a layer of chiffon and is patterned with gold paint and stamping. I have hand-stitched it. The binding is black fabric, sponge-stamped with gold paint.

Here is a detail photo.
Can you see how the painted fusible webbing adds extra texture and shimmer?

So here's how to make painted webbing for your own work.

You will need: 
  • Plastic table covering
  • Fabric paint or acrylic paint
  • Paper-backed fusible webbing (I used Vliesofix)
  • Scissors to cut fusible webbing
  • Paintbrush or foam roller
  • Non-stick baking paper
  • Iron
  • Cotton background fabric


1. Cover the table with the plastic table covering. This will protect the table from moisture.

2. Cut the fusible webbing to the desired size. This will depend on how you plan to use the painted piece. For the samples shown below, I have cut A4-sized pieces of Vliesofix. Different types of fusible webbing will give different results, so have fun experimenting. Be aware that fusible webbing does have a ‘grain’, so you can employ the direction of the ‘grain’ to suit your purpose.

3. Place the fusible webbing, paper side down, on the plastic. Paint the webbing carefully, making sure that the brush hairs do not get caught. Alternatively, you can use a small foam roller. The paint can be applied thickly so that the webbing is fully covered, or it can be diluted with water to create a thinner layer of colour. Try combining different colours, as well.

4. Allow the paint and paper to dry. The painted fusible webbing is now ready to be used.

5. Place the painted webbing, face down, on a piece of fabric. Ensure that the paper backing is in place. Place a piece of non-stick baking paper on top. This will protect the iron from any excess paint.

6. Using an iron, fuse the webbing to the fabric in the usual way. Wait for it to cool and then carefully remove the baking paper and the paper backing. The painted surface is now ready for stitching. Alternatively, you could fuse a piece of sheer fabric such as organza or chiffon to the top if another layer of colour is required.

7. If other elements such as coloured pigments or fine metallic flakes are required, carefully add them to the wet paint at this stage so that they adhere to the paint.


This sample was coloured with Lumiere Pearlescent acrylic paint, straight from the bottle and applied with a brush. I used two colours – 573 Magenta and 569 Violet.

This sample was coloured with Lumiere Pearlescent acrylic paint, diluted with water and applied with a brush. I used two colours – 571 Turquoise and 569 Violet.

This sample  was coloured with Reeves acrylic paint, diluted with water and applied with a brush. I used two colours – Lemon Yellow and Yellow Ochre. I then rubbed Pearl Ex 665 Sunset Gold pigment in places while the paint was wet.

In this sample, I fused painted webbing to a background fabric. I tore pieces to add a distressed look and then patterned the fabric with with gold paint rubbings. Note that the painted webbing has been folded before fusing. This adds extra pattern and texture.

So now it's your turn to have fun. I'd love to see how you use this technique, so please share your photos!


  1. Hello,
    Thanks for sharing the method.
    It looks beautiful

  2. This is so cool! Thanks for sharing the process - would you like to link it up on Off the Wall Friday (on my blog) - Fiber artists are sharing what they are doing creatively - we find it really inspiring and educational!

  3. I love the painted fusible. Your "sorry" piece is very effective.


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