DIY Sun Printing Art

Learn how to master the art of sun printing

Sun printing, is a creative approach to printmaking, based on the cyanotype process. The use of sunography has been in use since the nineteenth century, introduced by the English botanist and photographer, Anna Atkins, actually the first female photographer.

So today I’m going to show how you can create your own art with solar-powered photography. You can make sun prints from almost any object on both fabric and paper.

I’ve used the sunography kit which contains 6 different colours of fabric and once you’ve made the print you can incorporate the unique pieces of fabric into any project.

So sun printing it is, shall we?


sunography kit

Clipboard and a glass sheet (I’ve used the glass from a large framed photo)



… and of course a sunny day!

Step 1

Place the fabric sheet on the clipboard (it was rather wrinkled but I didn’t want to “trick” the magic of the fabric)

The fabric sheets are light sensitive, so it comes enclosed in a light-proof bag, as any light the fabric is exposed to will cause it to imprint. Therefore, remove sheets from the bag quickly and securely close the bag.

Step 2

Place your desired object on top of it.

Flat objects work best and will give you the strongest prints, but you can get a surprising effect with more 3-D things as beads

Step 3

Arrange your design and cover with the glass sheet, here’s my weaved and then pressed palm leaf

Step 4

Place it outside in the sun and leave it for at least 5 minutes, I’ve waited 20 minutes to get sharp edges and intricate shapes

Step 5

Remove the fabric from the clipboard and wash the fabric. Rinse it until the water runs clear

Step 6

Lay flat or hang to dry and voilà!

As you can see the silhouettes were created using objects from around the house, such as a pair of vintage glasses, office knick and knacks, pressed flowers and palm fronds.

This is the framed sun print of my weaved palm frond, you can get the tutorial on how to weave it right here.

I’ve seen so many interesting and gorgeous results with sun printing, and next up must be a dandelion print – and maybe with a bit of simplifies embroidery! You can find much more inspiration right here on Pinterest.

Lately, the weather has been absolutely stunning here in Denmark so it was the perfect way to capture the early signs of summer.

Tell me, how are you making good use of the bountiful and sunny days?

Thank you for reading and happy weekend!