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Photo Transfer – Lavender Scent Bags | Melbourne Family Photographer

Well Melbourne we’re two weeks into Lockdown 2.0. How are you holding up?

For my business it’s been very frustrating as I have had to shelve my family lifestyle and preschool photography but I’m working on personal branding photography which is super exciting… however, more on that later because right now we’re talking crafts with photos, specifically transferring photos to material

Photo Transfers

I’ve had this idea in the pipeline for a long time but it just seemed like it was going to be lot of effort because transferring photos to material doesn’t sound like it would be easy… but it actually was (although having said that, this was a small project to start and before you try and transfer to anything big or too precious I would practice a lot more!)

Another reason this has been in the pipeline for so long is that I’m not sure just what type of items should have photos on them. As much as I’m advocate for printing your family photos I also don’t believe they should be on every item you own either. At the back of my mind I just couldn’t get the image of the personalised totes that Kath and Kim don to Fountain Gate - let’s be honest, they may rock them, but not everybody has that ‘hornbag sas’ able to pull it off so well :P

Lavender Scented Bags

So I decided to do these little scented bags as a happy medium – they aren’t a fashion statement but are sweet enough for my little girl’s sock draw and a lovely reminder of the time we visited a field of lavender (as one did without second thought, but for the whether, pre COVID).

Scented bags with photo transfer decal, looked at by child

What you need

· Photo Transfer Paper (I used Designline light fabric transfer paper for inkjet printers)

· A printer

· Calico Bag

· Iron

· Dried Lavender


· Measure the size of the bag so you know what size to print the photos to.

· Copy photos to a word document and crop them down to the size you need.

· Invert (flip horizontal) the photos as the transfer results in a mirror image of the print. This is especially important if using any images with text!

· Print the photos on the transfer paper as per the instructions that come with the paper.

· Cut the prints out, leaving a small boarder around the photo

· Place the photo transfer paper (image facing down) onto the bag.

· Iron (steam off) over the paper (I placed a material napkin over the paper to iron initially and then lifted that and ironed the back of the paper directly).

· The instructions said to iron for one minute but that burnt the first transfer. So from then I just winged it until it seemed hot enough. The paper needs to get hot enough to stick to the material. There should be some resistance when trying to peel it away form he material (not the iron - then you'd have a serious problem!)

· It becomes really hot so let it cool down sufficiently before peeling the backing off.

· Peel the backing off gently to reveal the transfer. If the photo remains on the paper while peeling away stop peeling and iron it again.

· Fill bags with lavender and have fun!

Project start - Lavender bag and photo transfer prints
photo transfer paper and iron
ironing photo transfers with child
peeling back photo transfer paper by child
child putting lavender into little bag with photo transfer
reflection of child in spoon during craft
lavender craft and child's hands
child putting lavender into little bag with photo transfer
child smelling lavender scented bag with photo transfer

So there it is, it’s not too difficult but because I did burn the first transfer (which was actually okay because it just gave it a vintage-type vibe) I would say practice first and with different material types before trying to do a big project (especially if it’s to be a gift).

From Family Lifestyle Photographer to Magic Mama...

Something that surprised me was that my 4y/o daughter said this was more fun than watching TV, which was a big surprise because she is a little TV addict! I was actually going to do the transfer without her watching because the hot iron and a strong-willed girl who thinks she can do everything and anything “as long as she’s careful” just seemed like too much hard work… but she really enjoyed watching what was happening and declared that I was doing magic – that’s right, just call me ‘Magic Mama’ from now on ;)

So that’s two projects down, four to go!


p.s. Want a family photography session once lockdown 2.0 is over? Head over to my portfolio and see if my relaxed, fun and emotive style of photography is for you, then contact me to book! I don’t like to brag but it’s not only my ironing skills that are magic – my photography skills are up there too ;)



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