Sometimes you have a light colored background fabric for your embroidery. Suppose you want to add for instance a light blue sky (not embroidered).
Is it possible to use water soluble pencils to "paint" the sky? And how do you do it.
Do you first draw lightly with the pencil on the fabric and then wet it with a brush?
Or do you draw with a wet pencil directly on the fabric?
I do a lot of painting on fabric and have used watercolours, silk paints and artists acrylics from tubes. The latter will stiffen up the fabric to varying degrees depending on how thick the paint is. Well watered down acrylics don't change it much. But the paints sold for painting on silk are lovely for cotton fabrics too and will flow on nicely on a dampened fabric. Brushed onto dry fabric they give interesting textured look. Iron to fix. Acrylics fix without ironing. Watercolours will not fix but if the item is not going to get laundered that doesn't matter. you can paint them on from tube or solid blocks and get a nice gentle colouring.
As for the watersoluble pencils, I haven't tried them on fabric so I am going off in a minute to have a go!
I think painting background fabric for embroidery can be a very good idea. Even when stitching quite heavily often a bit of background shows through and it is nicer if it is a colour that blends in. Also it looks more mellow than bought coloureds and helps make your work personal to you.
Thank you Joy, for your clear explanation. It doesn't seem that difficult. Certainly I'm going to try it.
The only thing I have tried to paint till now is a piece of lace. I colored it with a wet soluble pencel.
I wasn't happy with the result because the color looked different and the color remained too light, although I painted it several times.
I have colored lace very quickly and effortlessly using Rit or Tintex fabric dye (craft shop or supermarket). I mix some of the dye in a spray bottle with hot water. Using a piece of waxed paper or cardboard underneath the lace, I just spray the lace. It gets into all the little holes and edges, covers very well.
I have several of these dye spray bottles made up already and just shake them when I want to use them again.. no need to reheat or anything else.
I labeled the bottles as it is difficult to tell the colors from just looking at the dye solution. I also use these dye solutions on papers, fabric, ribbons, and even wood. Just a suggestion.
I've just recently started watercoloring the muslin, it's very subtle but blue watercolor looks like the sky and makes bright colors pop. A word of caution which probably everybody else knows, I never used to wash my muslin before stitching and there must be sizing in the muslin and the paint wouldn't cover in certain places(didn't look bad just wasn't the look I was looking for) and I haven't tried it on a wearable or a purse just framed pieces. I'm allergic so afraid to try some of the dyes(although recently read an article about Rit and may give it a try) so watercolor works well for me.
I found a way to paint on fabric, that works well for me, if I want a soft sky or just deepen shadows. I use watercolours or drawing ink with a lot of water. First I make the fabric wet and wring it out. Now I paint what I want with very liquid colours. You can get fine shades that way. Let the fabric dry horizontal.
Carefull with using ink. If you've got to much, you will get matte stains.
My daughter painted a piece of linen fabric, we drew the park bench on with a fabric pen and then I stitched on it, with many many of french knots.
We used fabric paint, we learned that we should have watered it down a little and let the fabric dry on plastic or something that would not stick to the back of the fabric. We let dry on cardboard, bad idea! It was hard to get the needle through some areas. Next time I would put the fabric on a stretcher frame before painting too.
This was a really fun project to do and I will being doing another project.
Could someone point us to photos of your painted backgrounds, please? Your descriptions have my mind whirling! Denise, I would love to see that park bench. Janine, what kind of ink stains are you talking about? Could a "heavy hand" with the inks result in a more vibrant painting - or just too messy to work with? I have not tried water color pencils on a large area (just doll faces!) and I'd like to see what the effect looks like.
I don't mean the kind of ink stains you remember from old schoolbooks.
It's just so, that ink is a solution of pigments in water. While drying the water vanishes and the pigments sediment on the surface. And if you have got a lot of pigments of less space, they concentrate on one point. And that are the matte stains I'm talking about. You can want them and work with them, but most times they are not like you hoped or they are simply too messy.
Is this understandable? I'm not always sure about that I've chosen the right words to explain.
I'll try to find some pictures.
Above is an underpainting I did with plain watercolors (meadow, step 1) --it's easy peasy, just spritz muslin with water and lay in color. See my page photostream for lots more examples. I always use watercolor pencils for sharp outlines, and watercolor for washes. I have specific tutorials for how-to at http://freedomofstitch.com/?page_id=219. Hope it helps -- mixed media embroidery is the BEST!!! I also have a slide show called From Sketch to Stitch which shows a series of works first as a sketch and second how the stitched piece looks here http://www.slide.com/r/AJNOMLkvkz-LBFIovxznHLdq1ZnxksH9 Good luck and have FUN! victoria
Hi! I'm truly a newbie to this group, but I think I may have something to offer on this subject for you. Yes, you can use water soluble pencils (watercolor pencils) to "paint" the sky and I usually lightly pencil on the fabric and personally prefer a little water on my finger because I can control the pressure and blend better - at least that's my experience.
ALSO, you can use an acrylic wash (acrylic paint with water added) and a small brush. Try it first on a piece of muslin to get the color and blend you desire. I prefer to use Golden brand liquid acrylics - far superior in quality and goes a long way. Allow to dry thoroughly and heat set with iron/parchment paper. There are numerous ways to add color to fabric, including paintsticks (Crayola has a nice set), stamping ink pad (use ones for fabric - see Jacquard).
I hope this is helpful to you. It's really fun to "paint" on fabric - just play with a piece of scrap muslin. You can even stamp on top of your colorized background for added dimension.
I enjoyed the info in this topic!
My latest fabric postcard backgrounds for sunrise/sunsets were painted (sponged) using Tulip Soft matte Fabric Paint (sunshine yellow & coral) with a freezer paper circle ironed on first.
It's described as "dries soft" and was easy enough to hand stitch through.
I also tried the watercolor pencils but didn't get the effect I was going for this time, although I can see the sky possibilities.