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Easy Labelling Project for Beginners

by Sam Watson on October 07, 2022

How to Pimp Your Storage!

As a die hard fan of The Home Edit, for many years now I have salivated over the pristine larders and wardrobes with their rainbow baskets and pretty labels. Sadly, I have never quite got around to achieving those perfectly instagrammable kitchen cupboards. Until now!

My hand has been forced, it appears that this year the Christmas Dinner baton has been handed to me. This is a BIG THING, and, whilst an element of skill in the cooking department is a plus, organisation is definitely key to the success of the whole day. Sadly, this is not a virtue I possess, which does not bode well for a smooth ride and the anxiety is starting to build.

Mum, with decades of practice, effortlessly serves up a burnished Turkey with all the trimmings whilst entertaining the kids, keeping the house presentable, and avoiding that last minute panic to get everything on the table at the right time.

My Sister-in-law, a 'Come Dine With Me' champion, flawlessly produces a made from scratch, exotic banquet for twenty, whilst imbibing her weight in Prosecco!

I however, appear to have missed out on the domestic goddess gene and am feeling the pressure of Christmas pasts!  

So what do I lack which my Mum and Sister-in-law have in abundence?

Upon inspecting my bulging cupboards and tangled kitchen drawers I've come to the conclusion that it is, apparently, a place for everything and everything in its place!

I figure that this should simple enough to rectify and decide it's time to take the first step!

Make your own - Bespoke labels for storage

A quick trip to IKEA and a few quid later I'm ready to go.

I have some Oracal 651 Gloss Copper self-adhesive vinyl as it will match the handles on my kitchen. As much as I love my cutter, I'm not actually keen on the look of labels and lettering on everything so I choose an unfussy typewriter style font that is in keeping with the minimalist look I am aiming for.

 

I used a mat to hold the vinyl on this job as it was well within the mat size and I find it easier to achieve a consistent cut depth with the mat. Make sure to squeegee the sheet down really well as there is lots of tiny movements on this job and it is important that your vinyl is secure. I carried out a test cut to fine tune my settings as it saves so much time when I then come to weeding. Peeling the mat away from the vinyl rather than the other way around, prevents the vinyl curling up.

I nested the labels together in the software to make the most of my sheet of vinyl and would have saved time if I had added a box around each label to make weeding easier but I forgot! Instead I used a scapel to slice between the lines of text after cutting. The text was small but the rounded style of the font made it really easy to weed.

 

I applied application tape to the weeded text, allowing the sheet to drape and make contact in the middle first then squeegeeing from the middle outwards to remove any air bubbles. I sliced up the material into my individual labels at this point too. Sometimes it helps to turn the material over and squeegee from the reverse side too.

 

Next, I cleaned the jars thoroughly. I want to be able to wash the jars going forward, even put them in the dishwasher, and I don't want the letters to fall off so it's important to remove any grease or fingerprints that could compromise the adhesive later.

 

I gave the letters one last squeegee to make sure they would adhere securely to the app tape then turned the vinyl over and peeled the backing away from the app tape, leaving the letters behind.

Using a ruler, I measured the position on the Jar so I could ensure all the labels ended up at the same height, then I squeegeed the vinyl down onto the glass trying not to apply too much pressure, clean glass is a really good medium for vinyl and usually sticks straight away so it doesn't actually need much pressure and you don't want to risk shattering the glass.

All I needed to do now was to peel off the application tape, pulling it right back onto itself ensures all the letters stay in place. I gave the labels a quick once over with a soft squeegee to make sure everything was really secure and I was done!

 

It's important that you don't wash or handle vinyl graphics for 24 - 48 hours to give the adhesive time to cure. If you need to remove the vinyl from the jars later simply warm the jars up (a trip in the dishwasher will usually do the trick), this will soften the adhesive and you can carefully peel the letters off, if you peel them off cold they will probaly break up and leave lots of adhesive residue which you want to avoid.


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