Tutorial: Make your own Waterproof Fabric

When I did my first fat quarter project of making a short wallet, I prepared the fabric to be waterproof with the iron-on vinyl.  I like it as it adds a protective layer on the wallet.  This can also be helpful if you want to start a sewing project that needs to be waterproof but unable to find a piece of waterproof fabric with patterns you like.  To make your own waterproof fabric, all you need is a piece of fabric, the iron-on vinyl, and an iron.

Iron-on Vinyl (Gloss & Matte)

There are two kinds of iron-on vinyl from Heat n Bond – matte finish and gloss.  They are both nice depending on your preference.  For this tutorial, I used the gloss one.

Iron-on Vinyl (1)

First, I suggest ironing the fabric to make sure there is no wrinkle.  It would make your waterproof fabric much nicer.

Iron-on Vinyl (3)

Then, measure your fabric and cut out the iron-on vinyl you need.

Iron-on Vinyl (4)

The back of the iron-on vinyl has gridlines that help cutting more precisely.

Iron-on Vinyl (5)

Peel off the backing paper of the iron-on vinyl (*Don’t throw it away yet!  You need it for the next step).  Carefully place the vinyl on your fabric, with the sticky side down on the fabric.  You may still make adjustment as needed as the vinyl is not attached to the fabric yet.

Iron-on Vinyl (6)

Place the backing paper on top of the vinyl.  Make sure the gridlines are facing the top and the back paper covers all the vinyl.

Iron-on Vinyl (2)

Set your iron to wool setting.

Iron-on Vinyl (7)

Gently press the iron on the backing paper and hold for 8 seconds in each area.  Slowly glide the iron to the next area and hold for 8 seconds.  Continue this process until the entire surface is ironed.

Iron-on Vinyl (8)

Turn to the back of the fabric.  Press the iron on each area for 4 seconds.  It is not in the instruction of the package, but I found it helpful to turn back to the backing paper side after this process and gently iron the entire surface again to ensure the vinyl is securely attached to the fabric.

Iron-on Vinyl - DONE

Leave it to cool for about 30 seconds.  Then peel off the backing paper and your DIY waterproof fabric is ready.  Just let it cool on a flat surface before starting your project.  Have fun!!