Monday, January 19, 2009

Paintstiks with rubbing plates and stencils

Experiments over the past couple of days:


The boring purple fabric is very crisp--high twist, high thread count--and I vaguely remember it being about $5/yd when I ordered it PFD in 1999. And it turned out boring. Sigh.

Gingko rubbing plate
The Cedar Canyon Textiles "Leaf" rubbing plates are double-sided, in theory. In reality, one side looked better than the other on the gingko, and the fern looked so bad on both sides I didn't even bother to photograph them.
Gingko rubbing plate

I also tried a polymer-clay patterning plate I found in a box. Be very aware of where the edge of the pattern is--this piece has a couple of dark spots where the texture ended but I was scrubbing with the stik anyway:

I then made a couple of stencils using a method from Jane Dunnewold's Complex Cloth: index cards (in lieu of cardstock, which I know I have but I haven't found in my back room yet), X-acto knife, and about four coats of acrylic sealant. These are just doodles from work:
Cheap Stencils

The directions on the box of paintstiks said to "put color on the stencil and push into open areas with a brush", which didn't really work as well as putting a little color into the open areas and then scrubbing it around. Consequently, the squares smaller than the tip of the paintstiks didn't work very well, but the bigger squares aren't bad...
Home-made stencils

I let the rubbings dry for two days. I have not yet heat-set them. The stencils I did tonight.

The box didn't say how to clean the brushes ("citrus based solvent"--seemed to work OK), but I found directions on the website after I finished.

Notes: This stuff gets all over everything.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Originally uploaded by heatherradish
My sewing room window. There could be some good inspiration here later.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

ZOMG, Paintstiks

I finally broke down and ordered a set of Shiva Paintstiks for my birthday, and they arrived today. Took them for a brief test run--the rubbing plates were backordered. ZOMG. A stencil I cut out of cardstock looked like a bust at first--more paint on the edge of the stencil than in the cut-outs, but I was able to scrub at it with a brush and cover the open area. THEN I started scrubbing some more to move the paint on the edge onto fabric (I hate to feel like I'm wasting my new toy), and ZOMG!

I am now totally upset with myself because I can't think up anything interesting to make into a stencil.

I will not use the orange paintstik on the yellow thingy I painted over the weekend unless I know I have a wicked-awesome stencil. Thinking about paint or dyed fabric.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Needs orange

I spent a week diligently attempting to sketch beach sand from last weekend's outing (had the beach all to myself!) and then the fabric I sat down to paint yesterday looks nothing like it:

Not beach sand

Fabric paint on hand-dyed fabric. Needs orange; haven't decided if the orange should be paint, thread, fabric, beads, sequins. Maybe more green, too. Learning I could use a liner brush with some competency was exciting.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Block Print Redux

Thought I'd try the PCB-inspired block I carved two years ago again (I don't know where the pictures from that post went...)

Acrylic paint:

Ugly hand-dyed fabric*:
*Maybe "ugly" isn't the right word. During my sorting, I separated hand-dyed fabric (some of it I did 9 years ago, good grief) into "interesting"--lots of pattern, more than one color that work together well, really good color--and "boring"--almost solid, unattractive or muddy colors, etc. I pulled both of these from the "boring" bucket.

Block prints on yellow:

Block prints on puke-color:

Acrylic paint on denim:
Acrylic on denim
Commercial foam stamp. Was just trying to use up the extra paint--I like the muted effect of the paint on the denim. This particular scrap isn't very interesting, but it's good to know about the paint for later projects.

Fun with Tulle

I still hate tulle, but I like the look of teeny scraps captured under it. This stuff was all done last week:

Further adventures with tulle
I wish I would have bought more of this blue foil-dot net that I found when I was excavating my stash, because I can see lots of this in my future. This will be a background for something.

Coffee cuffs
Coffee cuffs, from teeny scraps and tulle. The middle one has too much contrast, I think.