Friday, January 25, 2008

Glue resist batik

This is started out as a piece of plain white cotton fabric, which I painted with Elmer's "Washable School Glue No-Run Gel." It looks light blue in the bottle. This technique does not work with regular white Elmer's glue.

I allowed it to dry completely, which took about 4 hours. I put mine on top of the dryer while a load of laundry was tumbling, just to make sure it was really dry. It's hard to tell, because it is still a bit sticky even when it is dry.

Then I took Jacquard Dye-Na-Flow fabric dyes and painted them on. The spots where the color is most intense is straight dye. The pastel places are where the dye is watered down. I was a little bit surprised that it really worked; I had expected the dye to wet the glue enough that it would sneak into those areas, but the glue must really saturate the cotton fibers. Pretty cool.

I allowed it to dry, then heat set the dye by ironing it with several layers of paper towels on both sides (because of the glue). Some of the paper stuck to it, but that was okay, because after that, I thoroughly rinsed it in warm water to get all the glue out, peeled off the bits of paper towel that had stuck, and then dried and pressed it.

This would be a really fun way to make quilt blocks for a kid's quilt. Or for one of those kindergarten quilts (you know, where the teacher finds out you are a quilter and suddenly you are in charge of helping 25 kids make a quilt?)

I wonder how it would work on a t-shirt...