Thursday, August 9, 2007

Surface Design Techniques: Screen Printing and Transfer Dyes





I wish I had went with a cream or light grey for the beetles but instead I grabbed what was convenient.  I'm considering some very thin tree branches in a metallic green and it'll be finished.

Below are the experiments with transfer dyes.  I'm not so sure about these...they are fun to play with but to really get the full benefit I would need to have more control and intent with my drawing skills which isn't on the near horizon for me.  Plus they are a lot of work with the iron to get full colour out of light weight ironing skills with these but more of a full muscle sweat workout.  I can't say I wasn't warned about the amount of energy it takes to do the transfer for full effect because I was.  The iron has to move quickly while pressing down very hard in order not to burn the fabric and to get a good transfer. The first two pictures are the dyes painted on paper after they have dried.

Dscn2631 Dscn2632

The dried paper is then turned over on fabric that must be at least 60% polyester. These are the images on 100% poly fabric which gives the most vibrant colour with these dyes.  Hard to believe by looking at the paper that the colours would be that different.

Dscn2627 More results on fabric: Dscn2629


  1. wow! they do look really different! very nice, vibrant color! i like the beetle motif...looks kinda scarab-y. (is that a word!? maybe not!)

  2. that looks great. will you work with those transfer dyes again? I have some and hated them. After going to all the work to make them up (bought powder from prochem) and them them printed onto paper, they looked awful on the fabric. Maybe it was the fabric I used...a poly off-white sheer. Yuck. Never again.

  3. Wow, very interesting results. The colors are beautiful.

  4. Oh,K. These are fantastic! I am going to have to try this technique! I'm still not a fan of the dyes and maybe this is something closer to what I'd like. Thanks for sharing.
    Your samples are fun. I can't believe the intensity when the image is transfered. Very cool. You can use those paper images for some collages or go back into them with paint can't you?

  5. I can see you have been playing around with lots of different media lately! I've never done foiling, but have done some screen stuff. Bugs are a great topic for that! I love their interesting shapes and they're not so big.

  6. WOW. Wonderful layered images and bugs! I've always wanted to try this screen printing but seemed too technical. Thanks for showing us!

  7. You are so full of creativity and adventure these days! I love that you keep trying new stuff, and this project is so cool.

  8. Amazing! I have not ventured into screening yet, but you may have convinced me with your work...
    Thanks for your nice thoughts on my blog - osnaburg is a loosely woven unbleached,(raw) cotton with slubs on it. You can find it at Jo-Anns. Takes procion quite well, and quilts like a dream...

  9. You've gotten some great results with the transfer dyes....I think you hit the nail on the head with the % of polyester! Thanks for all of the great pics!

  10. Looks great girl! I love watching all the ideas you've got spinning around play out on the fabric!

  11. I love the beetle! I've been thinking about trying some screen printing, sort of as an extension of the stenciling I was doing. I've also done some stamping on fabric with hand-cut stamps (cut from white erasers I got at the dollar store).
    I put a couple of little art quilts up on my Etsy and am going to post them now on my blog--I'd love to hear what you think.

  12. I like how you set up the photos to show the stages! Since I don't know anything about these processes it helps me understand better. In any case, you just continue to inspire me. Especially since you don't seem to realize just how amazing you are.