Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Patterns from Marbling

The random patterns created from marbling can be very decorative. This scarf was marbled using Deka Marble paints. The choice of colours has created subtle patterning.
You can make a statement by choosing contrasting colours, or select just one colour to compliment the base colour of the item you have chosen to decorate.

Deka Marble is an intermixable water based paint giving brilliant intense colours and formulated specifically for the marbling process. The paint is light fast and wash fast up 60°C and suitable for use on all natural fabrics, especially cotton, silk, satin and paper. Test on synthetic and blended fabrics before your main project. Other objects such as wood, plaster and even eggs can also be marbled with Deka Marble.
  • Use 2 heaped teaspoons of Manutex RS to 1 litre of water or follow the instructions included with Deka Marble Medium.
  • Stir the mixture well and leave to stand for 2 hours until it has thickened into a gel. The solution will keep for up to 24 hours.
  • Pour into a flat, plastic container so that it is 2-3cms deep.
  • Drop colours onto the surface where they will begin to spread. Move the paint around with either a comb or a stick until you are happy with the pattern.
  • Carefully lay the wrinkle free paper or fabric onto the surface of the size and leave it to rest for 10 seconds.
  • Lift off, rinse gently under cold water, squeeze out and hang up to dry. To fix the paints onto fabric, allow to dry and iron on the reverse with a hot iron for 3 minutes.

This example of marbling has been created by dragging the colours across the size with a cocktail stick.

To use the size again, the surface can be cleaned by laying sheets of paper kitchen towel onto the remaining paint so that it is blotted up. Any marbling paint that has sunk below the surface will not affect future prints.

To extend the colour range, Jacquard Lumiere and Neopaque paints can also be used for marbling, as can any acrylic based colour.

Find out more about marbling from our Fact File page >

Friday, 15 April 2011

Coralie's Skeins

Handspun yarns by Coralie Miles from a selection of super soft fibres, find out which fibres she used >

The samples below are left, Tencel and Angelina fibre, and right, Dyed Merino and Tussah Silk blend

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Devore Fabric

Devore fabric is highly decorative and desirable.  It is created by using a devorant on a fabric that contains a mix of cellulose fibres and protein fibres.  Cellulose fibres include cotton and viscose and protein fibres include silk, hair and wool.

This sample of devore (top right) is made from Velvet fabric.  The pile (which is made from viscose) is woven into a silk fabric.  When the the devorant was applied, the viscose pile was dissolved (or 'burnt out') leaving the silk backing.

This lightweight Batiste can also be used with a devore paste.  The fibre mix is 72% cotton and 28% silk and would leave a fine, delicate patterning once the cotton has been dissolved.

The Dupont AlterEgo dyes add further possibilities with devore fabric.  One range of colours have been formulated for cellulose fibres while the other range of colours have been formulated for protein fibres. 

The two different types of dyes can be added to the same dyepot to dye the two different types of fibre.  Choosing contrasting colours means that the fabric can be dyed two colours at the same time!

Here is a sample of dyed devore and yarns.  The silk net on the devore cushion cover has taken the silk/wool Dupont AlterEgo dye colour while the pile has taken the viscose/cotton Dupont AlterEgo dye colour. Fibres (from left to right) include cotton chenille yarn, silk fibre, tencel fibre and wool yarn.

Find out more about how to use devorant >

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Tie-dyed Fabric

Shibori, or most commonly known as Tie-dye, is a method of patterning cloth by stitching, binding, twisting and folding so that the dye is not able to reach certain areas of the fabric. 

This silk fabric has been dyed with
Logwood natural dye

This is a great technique for experimentation and can be used to decorate t-shirts, bedding, curtains and fabric ready for making into clothes.  Following the instructions for your chosen dye will ensure that the colours remain wash fast.

You can achieve subtle patterning with just one colour, as in this silk fabric which has been dyed with Logwood natural dye. Or you can allow the tied fabric to dry fully before unravelling it, tying it differently and then dyeing it with another colour.  Use bright, contrasting colours such as red and yellow so that the two colours combine to create orange in the areas that have not been tied.

Cold water Procion MX dyes are suitable for most natural fabrics and are made wash fast by the addition of soda ash.  You must ensure that the fabric is prepared for dyeing by first washing out any dirt or grease which will resist the dye.  Use a few drops of Synthrapol in warm water to wash the fabric and then rinse thoroughly.  Follow this simple recipe to create your dye bath:
    Tie-dyed Fabric
  1. To dye 100g dry fabric weight, make a stock solution of between 0.5g to 4.0g dye powder (depending on the depth of colour required). Dissolve the dye powder in a little cold water first and then combine with 500ml cold water.
  2. Measure 3 litres of cold water into a bucket and stir in the stock solution.
  3. Add the tied damp fabric and ensure it is fully submerged
  5. Leave to stand for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add 120g of common salt (having first dissolved it in a little water) gradually over the next 10 minutes (the salt pushes the dye into the fabric, helping to create an even, rich colour).
  8. Add 30g of soda ash (having first dissolved it in a little hot water) and leave for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  9. Wash and rinse well.
This page 'How to Tie-Dye' on Paula Burch's comprehensive website 'All About Hand Dyeing' provides excellent instruction on how to create your tie-dyed fabric. Alternatively, the Jacquard Tie-Dye Kit, which contains thorough instructions and enough Procion MX dye to tie-dye 5 t-shirts is an excellent place to begin.

Friday, 1 April 2011

Digital versus Paper? FREE Magazine!

Now that information is available at our finger tips through mobile phones, i-pads, and laptops, there no longer seems to be the demand for printed matter.  Or is this true?

Magazine sales and catalogue demand remain high here at George Weil. Our customers still express the desire to hold something in their hands; to flip through the pages and turn down corners.  That's why we're offering to send a FREE back issue from one of our craft magazine titles with every order placed in April 2011

Here are just two examples of the magazines available as single copies, or on subscription, though George Weil:

Step back through time to learn about the featured needle crafts, or travel around the world to discover techniques and traditions - this delightful magazine celebrates the craft and includes step-by-step projects for recreating many of the textiles from the fascinating articles.  Find out more about this US magazine title >>

The Journal
A most popular magazine for Weavers, Spinners and Dyers.  This title includes informative articles such as 'Rigid Heddle Techniques: Woven Shibori' and 'Notes from the Novice Spinner' in the Spring 2011 issue.  The magazine also includes conference and exhibition reviews plus news from the Guilds of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers (visit their website).  Find out more about this British magazine title >>

Other magazine specialise in mixed media crafts, spinning, sewing, jewellery making, weaving, knitting, quilting and crochet, take a look at the magazine titles available on subscription or as single copies >>