Sunday, January 24, 2016

A Solid Dyeing Experience


Left to right: Avocado, Soft Orange, Chartreuse, Clear Yellow

"Wow! I'm finally getting a grip on dyeing!"--
What I said to my family last night before dinner,
and before they all stared and laughed.


The assortment of fabric resulting from yesterday's dye session had me really excited. I finally found a reliable process to get solid colors! That is, a consistent color without the mottled effect that is so often indicative of hand dyed fabric. That may not sound like a big deal, but certainly is for me. It's one step further in controlling how and where I put color on fabric. 




Admittedly, most of what I've been doing has been playing around with whatever tickled my fancy. A devoted lover of pink, I had not yet dyed any fabric my favorite color.



Elmer's Blue Gel glue can be used as a resist on fabric. I'd read about it being ideal to use with children, and wanted to give it a try. I pinned out a piece of fabric that had previously been soaked in soda ash, and line dried. There's no secret to it. Just squeeze out the glue in whatever design you want, and let it dry. In this case, it was overnight until the glue was dry--something to consider if you were to use it with kids. It would take 2 sessions.

When the glue was dry, I dipped the fabric in the dye several times, and laid it flat sandwiched in a vinyl table cloth to cure.



The glue rinsed out about half way with hot water in the sink, but it took a hot washing machine cycle to get it entirely clean. I might have thought the doodling out better, but I think parts of it will make cute fussy cuts. 

*I really wanted you to see the tiny specks of fuchsia on the bubblegum pink. Those were undissolved bits of dye that remained in the solution, and bonded onto the fabric. I was so careful about stirring the dye this time, but I still had a few specks. Sigh.


Two batiked pieces done with soy wax turned out fun. I just played with the tjanting tool, and doodled randomly. The first had more of a summery feel to it, and the second reminded me more of Christmas. Both were done without much planning other than to use up some dye left over from several weeks before. The Procion MX Dyes lose their strength after a few days at room temperature, and are best kept in lidded containers in a refrigerator. I wanted to see how well this 2-3 week old dye would work.



Without another to compare it to, I cannot say how much the intensity has decreased. The color is still quite vibrant in both pieces so for my purpose I consider it viable. As long as the remaining dye has not been contaminated with soda ash, dye can be used for an extended time if only just to color paper. 


There was a small amount of both dyes left from the previous batiks so I combined them to dye this piece. I had a small chocolates box in a heart shape, and it made a fine little outline for soy wax batik. It leans a bit toward the orange side, but is still a fun print. 

Reading back through, I use the word fun repeatedly. Let me repeat, this is all fun. Creative play is good for the heart, good for the mind, and good for the soul. Make time in your week to include some creative play, and experience the joy!

Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.

20 comments:

  1. What fun fabric!! Love that soft orange.

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  2. Very nice, Julie. You are getting so much accomplished!

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  3. Total #CreativeGoodness. Not only are you creating gorgeous colors, but while I love your solids, your print designs are also spectacular. I'm thoroughly enjoying this journey in your creative adventure.

    QuiltShopGal
    www.quiltshopgal.com

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  4. So beautiful fabrics/Hugs bambi

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  5. Quite simply beautiful Julie! How did you do the solids so well, I could never get mine to look so good.

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  6. I love your fabrics. Great pieces!

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  7. Hi Julie! These experiments created terrific fabric. You've got a handle on it for sure! I like both resist methods. LeeAnna

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  8. You are doing a great job with your fabric. And I am glad you are having FUN!!!

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  9. Okay, enough fun...get down to work and create something with all this beauty! LOL. Go have MORE fun and create something beautiful from all your fun dyeing. Love the sentence you said to your family: I can just see the eyes pop open and the sideways looks to each other, the smiles...here we go again!

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  10. What a fun idea. I must look if we hav this gel glue in Sweden. :)

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  11. I love those solids...congratulations on meeting that milestone! The resists are fun as well!

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  12. You are on a 'fun' high!! I think your fabrics, all of them, are amazing! I'll have to try that glue method. To me that looks like FUN!

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  13. Those prints are all fun. I love your solid colors. How long and how often do you actually dye fabrics? Your results are wonderful.

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  14. Thanks for linking and your inspiration you give us on the show and tell Monday this week !! Bambi Hug

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  15. What fun! I forgotten about Elmer's Blue Gel Glue as a resist. Now I know what to play with on my next dyeing experiment. Part of the fun of dyeing are the speckles and splashes that occur.

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  16. I really the heart fabric and just in time for Valentines day! And the one you likened to Christmas is great!! i used the elmer (blue) glue for my first prayer flags and ended up stitching over them with e floss. Making your own colors is a wonderful feeling and your colors are yummy!

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  17. Beautiful fabrics! But my favorite is those solids at the beginning.

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  18. Great results. I, too, am experimenting with surface design. You're right. It is fun!

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  19. I love the free-style look of your doodling and the unexpected speckles. They are the marks of an artist as opposed to commercial manufacture.

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