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Lettering on Burlap: Paint or HTV!?

Lettering on Burlap: Paint or HTV!?

diy decorative BANNer.jpg

We had my sister's baby shower last weekend and I made two different burlap banners. I previously made one for my shower and re-purposed it for her shower...since she's having boys and I have a girl, we definitely needed different decor!

Basically, you have two choices when working with burlap: paint or htv. They both have pros and cons - keep reading to see my method and takeaways!

Method 1: Freezer Paper & Paint


The one I made over the summer for my shower was painted. It was easy and cheap! I used freezer paper as a stencil and paint. This can be done with out anything fancy! However, if you have a cutting machine, you can cut nice designs to use! Otherwise, you can use good 'ole scissors!



  1. Cut freezer paper and iron the stencil to your burlap

  2. Mix paint and medium (read directions...i think it's a 2:1 ratio)

  3. Use a sponge brush and dap on paint. Put a piece of copy paper behind the burlap, it will go through and you don't want to get it on your table!

  4. Let dry for a few minutes and then peel off the stencil. You may need some tweezers for smaller pieces

  5. Let dry over night before handling/hanging the banner!

AND THAT'S IT! It's easy and it's cheap!


Method 2: HTV


I got a new heat press for Christmas so I REALLY wanted to use it!! It wasn't easy getting the HTV to stick to the burlap, but it looked soooo good when it was done! It is more vibrant than the paint, so I'm glad I tried it!


  • Cutting Machine

  • Heat Transfer Vinyl

  • Heat Press or Iron


  1. Cut designs on your HTV

  2. If you are using a heat press, follow heat instructions based on the brand of HTV you are using. If you are using an Iron, good luck :) It takes a LOT of pressure to get the htv to stick to the burlap. I had to press several times at 20 second intervals and CAREFULLY remove the carrier sheet.

  3. Once you get it to stick and remove the carrier sheet, press again without it. Just put your teflon sheet over the banner and press again.

  4. turn the design over and press on the back! This step saved me. I wasn't sure it was going to workout until I did this, then the HTV was really stuck!

  5. It's ready to use :)


So in the end, I think the banner with the HTV looked better but it was 1) more difficult and 2) more expensive.  Plus, if you don't have a cutting machine, you can totally do the freezer paper method and use any stencil!! If I make any more banners in the future, I will probably go with the freezer paper/paint method. I can't pass up easier & cheaper right? I'll have to sacrifice the look a bit...but that's okay...

Let me know if you make a banner!!!

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