Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday's Stitches - March 29th

Last month (?) Quilting Arts had a great article about glue gel resist batik-style dyeing. Considering how much I love painting on fabric I thought I would give it a try.

I already had everything I needed in the studio - Kona cotton muslin and canvas, Dye-na-flow dye - all I needed was the Elmer's School Glue Gel. After going to Walmart, Target, CVS - I about gave up then it dawned on me to go to Staples - they had it. I bought two bottles.

I washed a yard of Kona cotton muslin (I LOVE Kona cotton fine muslin) in hot water and dried it without a dryer sheet. I then cut a square and I did two experiments: (1) I doodled right onto the cotton with the glue gel on one sample; and (2) I placed a quilting stencil over the other square and brushed the glue gel in to the holes of the stencil.

After letting the glue dry thoroughly (I used a heat gun because I'm impatient) I painted on Dye-na-flo fabric dye and let it dry. Once it dried I washed out the glue gel (which was really easy) with hot water and Tide in the utility sink for about 5 minutes and rinsed really, really good. I then let it dry overnight.

Both samples came out great. So vivid and what a soft hand the fabric still has (unlike when I paint it with Lumiere or acrylic - even with textile medium it's a bit stuff.)

I will say that the sample that I used the stencil on (the purple swirls) -- the colors washed out a bit as that upper left corner was not totally dry before I washed it. (NOTE TO SELF: Next time - don't be so impatient and let the dye dry overnight or, out in the sun for at least 3 or 4 hours before rinsing out glue.) I am happy with both samples even though the one is light as it just adds more interest.

After drying the washed pieces, I decided to use the freehand doodle as my Sunday's Stitches canvas and began my hand embroidery and beading. I am excited about the possibilities with making my own fabric with the glue gel and Dye-na-flow. I am excited by the possibility of not only embroidering and quilting my own art quilts, but to also color the fabric myself - well that's just pretty cool.
Things I will do differently NEXT time:
1. Definitely have MORE patience in allowing things to dry thoroughly;
2. TAPE the stencil down to the fabric and tape the fabric down to a glass;
3. Play with watering colors down and maybe "spraying" dye on to fabric with a spray bottle; and
4. Draw out the design to be traced with glue.

Expect to see A LOT MORE of this technique. I can see it quickly becoming one of my favorites for journal covers, quilt squares, and embellishments for larger pieces.
Have a great week. I'll be stopping by to see what YOU are up to!
Laugh as much as you breathe,
and love as long as you live.


Vicki W said...

that was a fun day!

3rdEyeMuse said...

what an incredibly fun experiment! the possibilities really are quite limitless, aren't they? love the Sunday stitches (and beading), too!

Chris said...

That looks pretty cool. I 'll have to try it. Thanks for making the mistakes for me!

Mary said...

That looks really fun! I love how they turned out.

katie jane said...

This looks fun! You can be a textile designer now. What original designer handbags those squares would make!

Jeanne Turner McBrayer said...

You are going to have some very unique, gorgeous pieces of needle art! I love the pieces Cynthia St. Charles has done with this gel-resist technique.

Michelle said...

These came out great! Isn't it fun? Stock up when the back-to-school sales start. You can also paint first, then glue, then paint over if you want your lines to be something other than white. Glad you are having fun!!!

Clevelandgirlie said...

Oh - you are so smart. I never thought of painting then glue then paint again. That's why I pay you the big bucks!!
Coffee?? Next Monday???

Anya said...


Cestandrea said...

this looks wonderful, and thanks for sharing your techniques here, I see we are all impatient:)

Fulvia Luciano, artist said...

Lovely experiments. Try also laying down some glue and dragging a fork or a comb through it; and you are right in that letting it DRY really helps, especially if you plan to spritz paint later.

A neighbor in S.C.

Pursuing Art... said...

How fun is that...they turned out great, Cathie! The possibilities are endless and the fabric is your own. Sunday stitches turned out wonderful and I LOVE the beads you've added...even the stacked stitch! Way to go! The stitches and the little glass beauties add such charm!

xo ~Lisa

P.S. Thank goodness for heat guns and hairdryers! ;-)

Heather P said...

Great results! Looks like a fun technique. I read the article but haven't had time to try it.

Jeanne Rhea said...

Love your experiments! I am into resists right now, too. Not on fabric, but still.... I can confirm the importance of being sure everything is dried well between steps. (Lots of steps in my process, too.)

girl_gone_thread_wild said...

go girl!

There isn't anything you can't do!

xo, me :)

CAROLYN said...

Hi Cathie
Thanks so much for your comment on my felted textile piece. Just popped over to see what you are doing and it's great to see your experiments with the glue resist. I tried this on paper and that work's too!! Love the colours you are using and when I get some time I will try the glue resist on fabric, as you have re-kindled my interest in resist dyeing!!!

Have a great Easter weekend!!


Sabii Wabii said...

So the gel glue washes out? Great Batik design. Can you go over the dyed areas with the glue and over dye the rest? Will it still resist?
Interesting idea and results.

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