Thursday, May 8, 2014

Fabric postcard with birchbark

I'm not one to give the standard Hallmark Mother's Day card. I like making things for the people I love. So I made my mom a fabric postcard with her and Dad's beloved canoe on it. I know it's not very Mother's Day- ish but I go for out of the box and so does my mom. I'm assuming you know how to make a fabric postcard. They are quick and easy when you use fusible web for your motifs or scene. I have a pattern with detailed tutorial for sale on craftsy for 2 bucks if you want directions. With this post I wanted to give you an idea of how I dealt with the birch bark.


First I made my little scene using bits of fusible. Believe me there is no shortage of scraps in my stash :-)

Their canoe has the words old town on the side - that is done with a pigma pen.

Usually I would put my scene on heavy weight interfacing before quilting but I used a double sided fusible interfacing and thought it might be to much glue and be to heavy to quilt. It might work but I just didn't want to chance it so just quilted the scene with no layers.(Of course technically it would not be quilting with out the layers so don't tell the quilt police).

As for the birch bark, you will need a piece at least the size of your card. The USPS size requirement are minimum 5"x3.5" so it will need to be at least that size after you trim it. I tried to shoot for4"x6" which is the maximum size because usually I end up trimming a lot off to get it even. So cut off all the crappy torn parts of your bark. Birch bark is made of layers. Peel off the top layer to reveal nice fresh clean underneath. If your back side of the bark is really thick, peel off that as well. You want something thin enough to work with but yet thick enough to hold up to stitching.


So since I am using a double sided fusible interfacing I simply iron or fuse both the bark and the fabric to the interfacing. Make sure you use parchment paper or a thin pressing cloth - no iron to bark surface. The iron will scorch and burn your bark. Ask me how I know :-)

Then trim to size. I then (sorry no pics of the finished card) zigzagged a close together stitch all the way around the outside edge of the postcard using a jeans needle.

Look at a regular postcard and draw the line down the middle and write postcard like they all have. Write your greeting, address and return address. You only need to put a regular forever stamp on it and pop it in the mailbox. I mailed mine on Monday and Mom got it by Wednsday - no problem.

If you live in an area that has birch bark, give it a go! Remember not to take birch bark off living trees though.

Happy Mothers Day to All!




  1. Beautiful! I have always wanted to make a wall hanging with the birch trees- even took a workshop to make them but the teacher ran out of time and I left with no trees. Have all the supplies though, should attempt on my own. Your canoe makes me want to get on the water- we have kayaks though. Happy Mother's day to you!

  2. Lovely idea! I wish I had access to the bark.

  3. Very cool! Did you use the birch bark for the back of the postcard (the side you write on)? It's a very clever idea that I will have to try.

  4. You have made a beautiful little scene in such a small space. Just lovely.

  5. Fabric postcards are wonderful gifts. Yours is beautiful and I'm sure your mother loved it.