Tortoise Totes! It's Good to be Green

So here it is...Project ClydeArt!

This post is dedicated to the Norfolk Tortoise Club - a non-profit and voluntary group with headquarters in Norfolk UK. The club has over 500 members worldwide and is led by one of the world's leading chelonian experts. They provide a wealth of information for tortoise welfare and have countless little shelled torts that need rehoming. If you're thinking of rehoming or need more info on tortoise/turtle care please do check them out. They helped us out hugely when we took on Clyde.

All these tote shopping bags have been donated to them and are available for sale through the Norfolk Tortoise Club to raise some funds to feed and heat these lovely beasts waiting for a new home. 

So back to the crafty part of this Clyde. It was ridiculous fun...

It all started with this little fella and an urge to do some painting..

 I took a photo and sketched his basic outline and shading. All his distinguishing features.

Once I was happy with the stencil shape I photocopied it onto Reynolds Freezer Paper. I've only ever seen this stuff on eBay and Amazon but apparently Hobbycraft sell it aswell. Readily available in the US though!

Then came the rather meticulous task of cutting out a stencil from the sketch; sharp craft knife and a lot of patience.

Now Freezer Paper is amazing because you place it shiny side down onto fabric and give it an iron - and there it sticks! Held perfectly in place for painting. You just have to let the paint dry before gently peeling it off. The other marvellous bit is that you can re-use your stencil multiple times. Given how tiny some of the parts of this stencil were it held up well for about 8 applications. I placed it onto some canvas/calico fabric tote bags and used So Soft fabric paints by DecoArt. 

The paint goes on really well and it quite thick but blendable. 

After drying pop the item in the washing machine at 30 degrees to set it in. All these bags can be washed in the machine on a low heat. The design should stay put for a long time (or so the paint manufacturer informs me!).


There we are! Reusable shopping bags for a very good cause :-)

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  1. What a cool stencil!
    I really need to get hold of some freezer paper too - it looks really fab to use.

    1. Hey Caroline - I think I found it on eBay. Its ridiculously easy to use, cant believe how well it held up :-)