Thursday, March 20, 2008

Silk and Dyes and Paints, Oh My!

First, it's become clear that when time is in short supply, the blog moves to the bottom of the priority list. I've been way too busy playing with silk to write about it. Yes, fondling and stroking it, but first dyeing and painting it. I'm taking another class with Marjie McWilliams at Quilt U -- Silk Dyeing, of course -- and, as usual, I'm consumed. The problem is that I can't stand to DO anything with the dyed silk because I'm afraid I'll mess it up. I don't want to cut into it (or tear into it, which is better, apparently, for silk) or stitch on it, so I just look at it a lot and, yes, fondle it.

I also tried silk painting this week. I've been reading about silk painting for a while and wanted to give it a try, but it sounds so intimidating. All that "gutta" and "dry cleaning" and "steaming" was enough to send me fleeing in the other direction.

But, I've also had some DynaFlow paints for a long time and didn't really like them for cotton since they're so thin. I read that you could use these to paint on silk; now, I just needed a resist. I have a bottle of Inkodye resist that I ordered for some reason a long time ago, and that I've used successfully on cotton, so I thought I would give it a try.

I put it in a little squeeze bottle, pinned my dry silk to a frame, and "drew" the resist on. After it was dry, I painted the DynaFlow in the spaces, waited for it to dry, heat set it with an iron (which was kind of scary because I didn't know what the iron would do to the resist), then rinsed out the resist. It worked!

Ok, so the painting is no masterpiece, and there are obvious watermarks on the background, since it was impossible to paint that large an area wet-into-wet. I think next time I'll spritz the background with a little water before painting it in. But I'm very, very happy that I can paint on silk without having to buy anything else!

1 comment:

The Idaho Beauty said...

I the silk is the right shape & size, you could always make scarves. I have a silk scarf blank from Dharma that I always meant to do something with - marbling came to mind initially. It still sits undyed or unpainted. I could never bother with all that steaming stuff either, so the current thinking has been the road you have gone down - to use the Dye-na-flow paints. I think rather than use resist, I just want the colors to flow together like watercolors. Thanks for sharing your experiment and results.