3. Brush painting in strong pink, orange, yellow and green and black procion dye paste. Cured 20 hours
I poured the black dye paste into a silk paint bottle with a fine nib and drew the black outlines of pattern onto the fabric and then added the other colours with a brush. It was very random and I just had to keep going not really knowing what the outcome would be. The main problem I had was to get the black dye paste to flow evenly from the paint bottle. The nib was a little to narrow and I think un-mixed dye particles clogged it easily – a lesson for next time.
The finished design is really experimental and unpolished but I will persevere!
Here are the finished fabrics ready to be made into jackets this week – with some extra embellishment:
I have been making Lino prints ready to experiment printing on fabric with procion dyes with inspiration from Ikat woven fabric and Ottoman textile design
I have used fabric paints in the past however as these are pigment based the prints are stiff and change the nature and drape of the fabric. Dyes are permanent and do not affect the hand.
Soda Ash (Sodium Carbonate) – to fix the dye
Urea – increases the brightness and intensity of dyes
Sodium Alginate – to thicken the dye mixture to a print consistency
Procion dyes – I will start with 4 colours – magenta, royal blue and lemon yellow and black. With this selection I should be able to mix many different colours and tones.
Synthrasol – to remove any trace of dye in the final wash
Safety: face mask, rubber gloves and heavy apron
Table – lined with cardboard and topped with a plastic cover
Large plastic jug
Glass jars to store the thickened dye
Prepared sticker for the fabric pieces
Pre soak the fabric – I have bought fabric that is already prepared for dyeing and will soak this in a Soda Ash solution over night
Mix 3/4 cup Soda ash with 7 Litres water in a large bucket and stir until the soda has dissolved. Then add half the fabric and leave to soak.
Wring out the fabric and then spin in the washing machine to remove excess water. The fabric must remain wet for dyeing.
2. Mix the dye base for 1.5 metres fabric:
Put on the face mask, gloves and apron
Mix together in a large plastic jug:
4 cups warm water
3/4 cup urea
1 tbsp sodium alginate
Mix well with a whisk as the mixture blends and thickens. Divided the paste base into 4 glass jars.
3. Prepare the fabric
As I am experimenting at this stage I will cut the pre-soaked fabric and unsoaked fabric into 20cm squares and lay them across the prepared table.
4. Mixing the dyes
Face mask, gloves and apron on
Add 4 teaspoon of soda ash to the paste base and mix in well
Measure out 1/2 teaspoon of dye powder into a glass jar and add 1-2 teaspoons of water and mix to a paste – it is important not to add too much water and to mix the dye very well so that it has all been dissolved. Unmixed particles of dye will cause streaking on the fabric.
Repeat this process with the other 3 dye colours.
N.b. Once the dye has been mixed with the soda ash in the dye mixture the dye will have short shelf life – maximum 4 hours so my experiment will have to be completed in that time
Use a soak and unsoaked piece of fabric for each experiment. First label the fabric with:
S – soaked
US – unsoaked
Comments in log book
a. Lino print
b. Brush strokes – wide and fine
c. Water colour – spraying extra water on the fabric to see how the paste behaves
e. Printing with a range of shapes – leaves, pasta etc
Leave 1/3 fabric pieces on the table for 90 minutes before washing.
Leave 1/3 fabric pieces on the table covered lightly with cling film for 4 hours before washing.
Leave 1/3 fabric pieces on the table covered lightly with cling film over night for about 16 hours+ before washing.
Finally rinse out the fabric in cold water until the water runs clear and then wash with Synthrapol to remove any last traces of dye.
Does pre soaking the fabric make a difference to the final colour and design and colourfastness?
I have never used procion dyes before and have decided to dye and print my fabric for a range of jackets with an Asian ottoman theme.
Researching I have found some good tips for using dyes thickened with sodium alginate to paint or print onto fabric by Alyson Provax
Alyson Provax – printmaker and experimental dyer in Portland, Oregon. Her prints are available through Uprise Art, and her work will be shown in Variable States: Prints Now at Upfor Gallery in Portland this spring. Find her at alysonprovax.com
Why a separate site to blog and chat? – well for exactly that reason! I wanted a place to put my work in progress, research notes, links and other things that I hope will be interesting to read!
This week I have finished a new design that as an A2 print will bring life, colour and energy to any space. The design is inspired by Turkish ceramic jugs and plates – so I though I would show you how I set about drawing and designing this piece.
I began with lines on paper – curves that intersect and create movement on the page. Plates in a variety of sizes make the perfect templates.
I use marker pens and especially love Promarkers. Choosing a colour palette is important – orange, blue, green (dark and mint) and cinnamon make great visual music!
With lines in place and overlaid with black marker and colours chosen I was ready to start doodling. I had a general plan in mind however usually the patterns tend to flow as the design grows
The finished design ready to be scanned and sent for Giclee printing!
This print is for sale at my Etsy shop – please click on the logo if you would like to be directed to the site: