Diy Office Accessories: How To Make Your Own Mouse Pads

Instructions and materials needed to save money on office accessories by making and crafting them yourself.

Sports enthusiasts can make a mouse pad, featuring deer, raccoons, birds and fish to display on their desks, with the help of their printer and computer software program. The blank mouse pads can be purchased at a craft store and come in a variety of sizes and colors. Printable t-shirt transfers are also available at the craft store - you'll need a partial sheet to do the imaging.

The print program should be opened and set up to print a picture, the size of the mouse pad. After inserting or importing the art, graphics, text and all, extend the edges of the design by a quarter of an inch to allow for trimming.

Flip the image over, using the option to do so from the software program. It's not necessary to flip the image over if there's no text whatsoever, but the mouse pad will display a mirror image of the original design.



Print a test page to see if the design is satisfactory. If changes are needed, now is the time to make any necessary adjustments. If the image is satisfactory, load the printer with the transfer paper sheet. Settings should be set for transfer paper or coated paper. After printing the image on the transfer paper, allow it to dry completely before moving to the next step.

Use a pencil to trace the mouse pad shape onto the back of the transfer paper, aligning the image to be centered on the pad. Cut out the shape of the mouse pad from the transfer paper, adding an extra quarter of an inch all the way around. Trim and save leftover transfer paper for another project.

Preheat the iron to get it ready for transferring the image to the mouse pad. The iron settings should be on high, cotton, no steam. A padded ironing board allows too much give during the transfer. Instead, use a hard surface and lay down a towel or piece of fabric.

Lay the mouse pad on the fabric, and then align the design on the fabric side of the mouse pad. Put pressure on the iron while ironing the transfer in a circular motion for one minute. If the transfer paper recommends a different amount of time, follow those instructions for ironing. Pay particular attention to the sides of the design, using the tip of the iron to go firmly around the perimeter of the transfer paper.

After one minute, turn the iron off and allow the mouse pad to cool. Don't try to pull the transfer up, even a little bit, until it is completely cooled. When it is, pull up a corner and tear off the transfer paper. Now you can cut the mouse pad to any shape you want. Shape it like a house, a flower, whatever.

There are new products on the market, which allow the transfer of an image to a mouse pad without the use of an iron. It is a photo silk fabric with an adhesive backing. The image is printed onto the silk fabric and is then transferred to the mouse pad. The image isn't stiff like it would be if using regular peel and stick paper, but is soft and has sheen, like an expensive fabric. This method produces a work of art on a mouse pad and is much safer for children than traditional iron-ons. Now that you know how to make a mouse pad, make many and switch them with every new season or holiday.

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