Spring is here and I couldn’t be happier! Weekly weekend trips to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, has me giddy with spring fever! I am particularly smitten with their tulip gardens, big swaths of color in every hue of the rainbow. In honor of those gardens and my love for the season, I decided to make some fun lino cut block print tulip napkins! If you’ve never made a block print before, this is an easy place to start. The shapes are simple to cut out and there is no set pattern that you need to stick to. Dress up your table with a classic nod to spring, using the incomparable stupendous tulip! Read on to learn how.
- Cotton or linen napkins (I used these from H & M)
- Craft paint suitable for fabric
- Speedy cut printing block
- Linoleum cutter
- Brayer (optional, you could use a foam brush)
- Pencil and scrap paper
- Iron and ironing board
1. Make your blocks! I opted to carve the stem and leaves separate so I could achieve different gestures with each flower: I cut one straight stem and one curved. Using the linoleum cutter, carve out the shapes. This is easier than it sounds, each cutter comes with a variety of different tips. You’ll want to use the smallest of the tips to get the finer detail in between each petal of the tulip and the larger tip to more quickly carve out the rest of the flower. The cutter also come with a blade that is similar to an exacto knife so you can cut out around the shape to get rid of any excess block.2. When I am block printing, I like to use a brayer to roll the ink onto the block. I find it more evenly distributes the paint or ink. However, you can also simply use a foam brush to apply the paint. Test your prints on a scrap sheet of paper until you feel comfortable with the process. Iron any wrinkles out of your napkins and start printing! Once they are dry, iron to set the paint.
Hooray you’re done! Spring has sprung in your kitchen! Now I am thinking about what other spring blooms would make for easy block prints….