There’s nothing like it on the market, and I want to share with you the samples I made in a special Playful Fabric Printing playdate that I had with the masters themselves at Pokey’s barn in Napa.
This was really fun, because I haven’t worked with dyes for about 10 years. I stopped working with fiber reactive dye mostly because I didn’t have a place to easily work with them after moving away from Austin, where I had a basement that I used as a wet studio.
It is loaded with ideas for creating different ways to make tools to be used for printing patterns, like this great tutorial for making a repeat pattern that could then be used to make a stamp or stencil.
I would have loved to have a book like this when I was working with dye on a regular basis.
To start our day we sat down and made foam stamps to use for printing with sticky back foam and acetate.
One of the cool things that I had never thought of was that Melly does, was to make a stamp that prints the background as well as the image. I’ve used the positive and negative of the cut foam before, but usually just for making an outline stamp, like the one above. I love Melly’s idea to PRINT a background, brilliant! right?
I used the same simple leaf pattern to make 4 different stamps. For the green one I used zigzag craft scissors to make a pinked outline.
I also made some X’s with a background stamp. Because they fit together best in one direction, I used a sharpie to mark an arrow on the acetate on both stamps.
This is one of the color pyramids that Carol developed for color mixing recipes. We chose the yellow-orange, the red on the left in the row second from the bottom, the blue in the bottom corner, and a black that has a strong purple hue as our mixing colors for the day. Once the colors were mixed in their strongest concentrates (dark values), they were mixed with print paste to thicken them. The light and medium values were made by mixing the concentrate color with different ratios of print paste to lighten them.
The fabric we used for printing had been pre-soaked in soda ash and dried.
You can see how she loads the brayer with a pretty thick goopy layer of thickened dye and then rolls this onto the foam stamp.
Next you place the stamp on the fabric and press very firmly.
The nice thing about foam stamps is you can pull up a corner to check and see if you have pressed hard enough every where before you lift the stamp.
And this is a piece of fabric that I used to roll my brayer on when I was done with a color, or to print excess dye off my stamp to ease with clean up. I always like using a scrap of fabric for cleaning up drips, wiping brushes or stamps on to when I work. Sometimes you get some really cool stuff when you’re not thinking about creating something intentional.
I kept my samples in a plastic bag with paper towels between the layers for a couple days until I had a chance to wash them out.
I started with a quick cold soaking rinse, agitating the fabric in the water for several minutes one by one, before then dropping them in a large bucket of cold icy water for about 20 minutes. After that I put them in the washer with hot water and a bit of detergent.
There are so many great ways to create personalized fabric, I think Playful Fabric Printing is a must have book if you’ve ever wanted to create your own printed fabric and/or want to learn Carol’s fool-proof steps to perfect color matching with fiber reactive dyes.
I’ll be out of town all next week teaching, so I’ll pick a winner on my return and announce it here on my blog on February 4th.
Please leave a comment below, for a chance to win a copy of this fantastic book! and check out these other blogs participating in the hop.
Jan 23:Melanie Testa check out Melly’s excellent book hack!
Jan 24: Carol Soderlund
Jan 25: Lisa Chin
Jan 26: Julie Fei-Fan Balzer
Jan 27: Me
Jan 28: Carrie Bloomston
Jan 28 Chris Dodsley
Jan 29: Lynn Krawcyzk
Jan 30: Leslie Tucker Jenison
Jan 31: Pokey Bolton