© 2003 D J Pettitt
Transfers, made using deli sandwich wrap, combine easily with just about all other collage techniques, and look wonderful.

D. J. Pettitt is a member of our online “family” who is very generous when it comes to sharing her never-ending stream of creative discoveries. She is always pushing the envelope and will create a beautiful piece of art out of anything that doesn’t run fast enough to get away. This time it involves deli sandwich wrap! We love her use of color and strong design sense - even in the challenging genre of collage, and, of course, we really appreciate that envelope-pushing thing.

D. J. lives and teaches in the Northwest, and we are thrilled to welcome her as a regular contributor to Now What? (See contact information at the end of this article to find out more about her teaching schedule.)


Supplies You Will Need:
Grease Resistant Sandwich Wrap. This is an unwaxed, semi-translucent paper available at restaurant supply stores. It comes 12"x12" - usually 1000 sheets per package. You will cut this to size it for your printer.

Paper Trimmer of some sort

Scanned Images (remember to flip the images in your graphics program - they will be reversed in the transfer process)

Golden Soft Gel Medium

Utility brush (mine is approx. 1" wide, but any size will work)

Ink Jet Printer


Step One
Use your favorite method to trim the 12"x12" sandwich wrap sheets to fit your printer. I trim mine to letter size - 8.5" x 11", and feed them one sheet at a time into the printer.

Trim a few extra - just in case you need to reprint an image for some reason. Though this method is pretty simple, it takes a few practice runs to get a “feel” for the process.


Step Two
We will be working with black and white or grayscale images. Scan old family photographs, or copyright free images into your graphics program, and increase the contrast a bit.

I use PhotoShop to adjust my images, but any image-editing program that will allow you to adjust the image contrast will be sufficient.

I find it easier to fill the page with images rather than print one at a time, but either way will work.


Step Three
Print image(s) in black ink on the sandwich paper. Your printer may transfer color images that have been printed on the sandwich paper but mine won’t. Experiment to see what works for you as printers will vary.

Cut out the printed image that you wish to transfer and set aside.


Step Four
On a separate piece of sandwich paper, spread a thin, but even covering of Soft Gel Medium the - to the size and shape that you want the transfer to be. If you like the look of brush strokes, leave strokes extending from the edge. If you like a smoother look, you can use your fingers or a softer brush. Stroke horizontally and vertically to fill in the center area. If you stroke in only one direction, you may miss areas that are important such as the eyes etc.

Lay the image ink side down, onto the area where you applied the Gel Medium and burnish with your finger. This does not take much pressure and transfers almost instantly. Gently pull up a corner of the image and check to see if it has transferred.

If you see wet gel and the ink has smeared, you have used too much gel or have pulled the image up too soon. You can lay it back down and leave the image on a bit longer, or if it is too smeared, start over using less gel and a new printed image.

If the paper sticks together, you haven’t used enough gel or have left it on too long. It only takes a couple tries to get the  “feel” of how much gel to use and how long to leave it on.


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