Wednesday, 3 March 2010

messing about on fabric

our group, the Connacht Textile Crafters, usually meets up every second month. we started out as "mayo spinners and weavers", but after a while it became clear that our members do all kinds of creative stuff and we wanted to be a bit more inclusive. we have our meetings at the "Museum of Country Live" in Castlebar, which graciously lets us have the room for free - and even gave us funding for an extra workshop. we decided to do some "textile painting" and after our hunt for a tutor proved unsuccessful due to extremely high fees - we decided to DIO - do it ourselves. this workshop took place last saturday - and I think it was great fun for everybody. granted, the preparations were hampered a bit by lack of suppliers and we could have talked a bit more about who brings what (we didn't lack anything but space and an extra sink, but had quite a few hair dryers and irons on offer:)), but other than that all went quite well.

one of the topics was marbling on fabric. I had done it before on paper and fabric and prepared all the stuff necessary for marbling. it's not really difficult, as long as the size/medium and the paints are well prepared. all that's needed is some alum treated fabric (cotton, blends or silk work best), some flat trays, size, paint and later plenty of water for rinsing. you don't need any drawing or painting talent - the results are non-repeatable anyway and can be a bit unpredictable. but trying out all kinds of patterns is great fun and with a bit of experience you can make a whole range of fabrics.

here are some of my "adventures"

this was the first batch - I tested the paints at home on wallpaper paste. it worked ok, though I hadn't done it for a while. the first sheets were a bit pale - you have to dot the paint blobs closer together to get stronger colours (they won't spread as much = stronger colours). you can run combs, picks, nails etc. through the paint - different tools and/or directions result in different effects.

when you drop the paint on it starts spreading - and one "cut" will form heart shapes - useful for mother's day cards maybe?:))

because we only used cat litter trays for the medium our fabric size was restricted. I tried to make three pieces that can be used together, despite the differences in pattern. I used the same three colours, just changed the sequence of applying.

another way could be to use one base colour (black) and similiar directions for "cutting" the paints - just add one other colour and they should go together - maybe in combination with a solid colour?
I had great fun - even though rinsing out the size can be a bit messy. I am sure I'll do more of that in the future - it lends interest to solid colours in patchwork, but bits and pieces can also be embroidered, beads could be attached or smaller pieces can make pretty cards. of course you could go over the top and add rub-on fabric paints etc - but I think the marbling patterns are effervescent enough as they are.


Delighted Hands said...

Wow! I am so impressed. I did some marbling many years ago-on paper but haven't given it a thought on some of my quilting cottons. Such beautiful results you achieved!

Anonymous said...

Hallo Bettina,ich danke dir für deinen netten Kommentar und dann noch aus Irland! Schön das du mich gefunden hast.

herzliche grüsse Patricia

Janet said...

What a creative day. I'm glad your group is meeting. You always send good displays for the K&S. Are you in touch with the Eastern Group in the Dublin area?

Anonymous said...

Hallo Bettina,
deine Stoffe sind ja interessant. Bis jetzt hab ich mich noch nicht an so etwas getraut, nicht einmal mit Papier. Habs bis jetzt nur in Zeitschriften gesehen. Was habt ihr für Farben genommen?

Woolly Bits said...

thanks - I think marbling on fabric is great, esp. for quilters! you get a nice effect with a little work - and end up with your very own designs!
Janet - yes, I do, though less so in spring and summer - more the closer we get to the k&s:)) we are going to talk about the next project soon - we'll see what the members come up with this time.
Juliana, ich hab die marmorierfarben von deka fuer stoff genommen. die kann man nach dem buegelfixieren bis 60 grad waschen, und sie sind auch nicht sehr teuer und halten ziemlich lange! ich hab sie von ruether aus berlin bestellt, aber es gibt sie auch woanders, viele patchworkanbieter haben sowas auch im sortiment! da gibts auch nicht viel zu trauen eigentlich - man mischt entweder duennen tapetenkleister an oder eben diesen marmoriergrund von deka, fuellt alles in eine flache schale, tropft farben auf, macht die muster - und legt stoff auf, fertig. wirklich einfach, selbst kinder haben damit keine probleme!