Glowforging My Fabric Scraps

I know there are already topics that address fabric but I feel this topic is unique and merits its own thread.

Sew…aside from jeans and t-shirts, everything I wear is self made. Which leads to a lot of scraps. I started this topic to post the results of fabric scraps I glowforge and also provide the link for the fabric which will tell the details on it and might be helpful for others. I will add more as I acquire more scraps and anyone else is certainly able to post as well (ideally please post the link or specs of the fabric as well).

So to start, I use fusible interfacing on all my glowforged fabrics. Because…it’s not like the glowforge makes the fabric stronger…

Also, I have seen people ask about ways to secure the fabric in the glowforge with magnets or sticky mats. I use an embroidery hoop because it is adjustable, holds the fabric nice and tight, and using bright colored loops is helpful in knowing where your fabric is when you have a dark fabric that blends in with the crumb tray.

So here is the first batch of glowforged scraps. Settings are listed as (speed/power). LPI for them was 225 and passes was 1:

Fabric: Linen
IMG_5809

For this fabric it has a low thread count and so if the interfacing was not on it then there would not be much of fabric left. What you are seeing in the image is more of the linen being burned into the interfacing
https://www.joann.com/lyocell-linen-rosette-ivy-stripe-fabric/17024399.html

Fabric: Crushed Satin

IMG_5822

For this fabric it also had a lower thread count (not as low as the linen above). The settings I recommend most is the 700/2 because although it looks the dullest in the photo, it does still stand out a lot when the fabric is as an angle because the fabric is shinny yet the engraving part is matte. Below is what the satin looked like on the back side and you can see how much went through to the interfacing.
IMG_5823

https://www.joann.com/casa-collection-galleria-crushed-satin-fabric/zprd_17939935a.html

Fabric: Medium Weight 100% Cotton

IMG_5821
As you can see, the 700/2 and 1000/5 showed up pretty well but also did not bleed too much into the interfacing.

https://www.joann.com/sew-classic-solid-cotton-fabric/zprd_17020546a.html

Fabric: Denim (Lyocell and Rayon blend)
IMG_5838

So with this one I want to stop and address the grainline. I am not going to go into what the grainline is (google has way better pictures and explanations) but here is the results of the engraved fabric when I pulled it in the direction of the grainline:

The engraving held up just fine. But here is when I pull in the opposite direction (along the cross grain):

As you can see, it did not hold up as well. This is just good to keep in mind when it comes to placement of the design. I would not place it in a spot that would experience a lot of pull on the cross grain direction.

https://www.joann.com/lyocell-denim-fabric-light-wash/17024167.html

Fabric: 4oz Denim

This one held up well even with pulling. That has more to do with the weave pattern for this material.

https://www.joann.com/sew-classic-bottomweight-4-oz-dark-wash-denim-fabric/11771631.html

I will update the main topic when I have another batch of scraps to add. I am thinking the next set will be more knits or start getting into upholstery and sailcloth.

Feel free to add your results and make sure and always know your materials before you put them in the glowforge. :slight_smile:

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Why are the two denims producing completely different colours? Are they different materials and I’m too stupid to know or is it something else?

I would love to engrave denim successfully, I’ve not had much luck yet- maybe it is my material choice.

That’s not a stupid question :slight_smile:

It’s because denim is not all the same. The light was denim is actually a lyocell and Rayon blended fabric while the dark wash is 100% cotton based. They are both considered denim but they are different from one another.

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Also, I recommend going to a place like Joanns Fabrics and pillage through their remnants buckets. You can get scrap denim for cheap and build up your fabric profile, which will help when being able to know the feel of the fabrics that work well.

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Nice! How about post-wash? Last time I played with fabric, the colors were not always stable.

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Looks great!!

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I will plan to do an update addressing that all. There are many options for things to add to the fabric post engraving that will help lock in the design. You also want to make sure and be gentle in washing it. I usually put them in a pillowcase then throw it in the wash.

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Thank you! The embroidery hoop is genius! I looks like you have the fabric towards the top of the hoop in these images. I bet if the fabric is on the bottom of the hoop cutting would go really well.

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This is great and informative. Thanks for sharing this n

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Well that explains a lot - 'cos my jeans always came out brown!!

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Wow, thank you for this great resource! Bookmarked.

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When I first looked I thought the puppyfeet were ironed on, As the laser melts any unnatural fabric at the edges thus sealing it at the edges, that makes laser-cut ideal for iron-on decorations :grin:

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Maybe laser welding?

Years ago in art class I made inflatable kinetic sculptures using plastic garbage bags and “welded” them with by running an empty hot glue gun down the seams.

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I think you are awesome for posting this. I’ve bookmarked it for future reference. I think the use of the embroidery hoop is ingenious.

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This dark denim looks great!

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Thanks for sharing your experiments and settings! Look forward to seeing future posts re: fabric.

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Hello! What are you setting for the material settings? I want to try the crushed satin settings. Also, if you don’t use the interface would the settings be different? Thanks for the help!

The settings are show in the pictures. I show results of a few settings. If you don’t use interfacing then the design won’t hold up well when it comes to washing and there also might not be much of fabric left.

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Wow, thank you for the information! Your sampling is impressive. I’m glad you pointed out the crossgrain stress effect.

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Thank you for the reply back. I was referring to the fact that it is not a proofgrade material, but I see that you have to measure the thickness of the fabric and include the height of the hoop.