How to Make Fabric Photo Magnets

How to Make Fabric Photo Magnets

My grand-babies are at an age where they are fascinated by refrigerator magnets so I decided to try to make them some.  I thought it would be fun if they could play with magnets that featured pictures of each of them. My first attempt was to simply print them out on a magnetic sheet. While this worked fine, they didn’t last very long. When you have toddlers that put their fingers in their mouths and then touch the printed magnet, it doesn’t take long before the ink runs and smears. I had also cut around each child in the pictures, instead of leaving them square, and it didn’t take long for the edges to start curling up.

I do a lot of work with fabric print sheets so I thought perhaps that might be a better option. These are the magnets I made and I am happy to share the directions with you so you can make them too.

Supplies You Need:

  • Printable Inkjet Fabric Sheets
  • Scraps of Muslin (or any fabric)
  • Scraps of Batting
  • Magnets
  • Craft Glue
  • Thread

Tools You Need:

  • Scissors
  • Pinking Shears
  • Sewing Machine

Start out by printing the pictures onto the fabric sheets. Follow the directions on the package. I sized the photos in a graphics program and then printed several on one page. Use whatever program you are familiar with to print out the photos.

Fabric Photo Magnet Supplies

Cut out the photos (Sherri’s Tip: as you can see in the picture below, I cut my photos out follow the edge of the photo as a guideline. If you have enough space between the photos you print, I suggest cutting the photos bigger than you will need them simply because it can make it a little easier to sew.)  Also cut out a piece of muslin and a piece of fabric that is a little bigger than your photo. Don’t’ worry about cutting straight lines or anything yet.

How to Sew a Fabric Magnet

Make a batting ‘sandwich’ by laying a piece of muslin down, then place a piece of batting on top of it and one of your photos on top of that.  Carefully hold them together, and sew up one side of the photo, across the top, and then down the other side. Leave the bottom open. (Sherri’s Tip: If you are uncomfortable with holding your 3 pieces together while you move it and sew it, you can pin them together. Just be aware that sometimes the holes left by the pins are noticeable on the printer fabric.)

Glue Magnets to Your Fabric

Grab your magnets and the craft glue. My magnets were small (1/2-inch across) so I used three in each magnet to make sure it would stick well.  You can test out how many you might want to use by simply slipping a magnet into the opening you left along the bottom of the magnet and trying to stick it on a metal surface.  Apply some glue to the back of your magnet(s) and carefully slip it into your magnet, between the muslin and the batting. Stick the glue side of the magnet to the batting.  Let the glue dry completely. (Sherri’s Tip: Don’t try to finish sewing this project before the glue dries completely! If the magnets are not secure, they may stick to the metal parts of your sewing machine and slide around.)

Finishing Your Photo Magnet

Now you are ready to finish your magnet. When your glue is dry, sew along the bottom edge of your photo.  Use a pair of pinking shears to cut around your photo and your magnet is done.

7 comments for “How to Make Fabric Photo Magnets

  1. 03/29/2013 at 5:31 pm

    I would have never thought to do this! What a clever idea.

  2. 03/30/2013 at 3:03 pm

    What darling photos!

    It’s look like the quality of printable fabric sheets has improved since the last time I tried them Is EQ the brand you recommend, Sherri?

      03/30/2013 at 3:17 pm

      Thanks Eileen. I do prefer the EQ brand… It is a little spendier but they feel more like fabric than some of the others I have tried.

  3. 03/31/2013 at 12:59 pm

    These would make great holiday gifts.

  4. KarenInTucson
    04/07/2013 at 3:30 pm

    Great idea. I use all the magnet advertisements I get for a lot of things. You could slip these into the photo and they are free!

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