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Painted Fabric Trials

After having such great success with mom’s painted fabric landscape quilt, I’ve decided to try painting more fabric and using it in my landscapes.

One thing that I learned from mom’s quilt is that when you wrinkle the fabric slightly, the paint will pool in the folds.  Unfortunately the wrinkles were going the wrong way for mom’s quilt, but maybe she won’t notice!

For these sunsets, I’d like the folds to work like the sun’s rays.  I think having the subtle lines will encourage the eye to move beyond the sun and take in the whole quilt at once.  Unfortunately these lines are anything but subtle.

So I’ve been experimenting with this technique a little and not quite gotten the hang of it yet.  For one, when I wrinkle the fabric too deeply, the paint darkens too much and the folds look bad.  Another thing I’m struggling with is the transparency of these transparent paints.  I’m now painting the fabric 3 times to get it dark enough.

Maybe the opaque paints would work better?

This is another sky I painted the other day.  I would paint, get frustrated, leave it to try, come back, paint some more, get frustrated, leave it to dry…again and again.  No wonder it’s so dark.

I’ve broken down and ordered a full set of Shiva Paintsticks.  I’ve had a great time working with the two I got from Dharma Trading Co, but I just couldn’t afford them at $6 a stick.  My husband suggested looking online somewhere else and I found a seller on ebay selling them for a great deal.  Choose 6 sticks (3 mini’s count as 1) for just $10.

I’ve found with painting these two pieces on very high quality, uber thread count cotton that you don’t need to paint on high quality cotton – it just makes the fabric more stiff once you’ve painted it three times.  I’m going back to my cheap walmart $3 muslin.  The looser weave makes the fabric have a better hand, even with oil paintstick paint all over it.

By the way – Walmart is phasing out the entire fabric department in all stores.  In Crossville, TN and in Southport, NC they don’t even have a craft department.  I’ve seen it with my own eyes and it is a sad sight indeed.


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