Flour Resist + Paint Removal | Flour Paste Tutorial Part 4

Removing the flour resist and paint from your fabric!

Unclamp your thoroughly  dried fabric from the table.  Fill a large bucket with warm water and slowly submerge your fabric.   DO NOT do this step in a sink, the flour resist WILL clog your drain and pipes. You’ve been warned!  

Soak the fabric in warm water to remove all flour – 15 to 20 minutes should soften the resist enough to peal off.  Wash in a mild detergent with cool water.  Dry after all of the flour is removed.  

*Remove wrinkles using an iron or steamer. 


washing fabric after flour resist

fabric example after flour resist is removed

 

ENJOY!!!

Your new fabric is done! Now get creative with it!

Fun was to use your decorative fabric
  • pillows cases
  • napkins
  • throws
  • scarves

I used my cracked fabric in a past art show.

cracked fabric using flour paste resist

 

Thanks for checking out this Flour Paste Resist Tutorial! I hope you had fun!

> > > Part Three : Cracking the Flour and Adding Paint

> > Part Two: Preparing and Applying the Flour Paste Resist

> Part One:  Fabric Preparation 

 

Part 3 | Cracking the Flour Resist

Now that your flour paste resist is dry, you are ready to begin cracking!  This is SO satisfying!

STEP ONE: CRACKING THE FLOUR RESIST

Start cracking the flour resist by crunching the fabric with both hands. Do this as much or as little as you like.  The more you crack the flour resist the more areas for your color to seep through.  Don’t worry if you cannot see all of the cracks. They are there, trust me!

Get creative with this step, you can make concentrated cracks on particular spots of your fabric. You can even do one mass of cracks and leave the rest of the fabric solid to dye over later. There are many possibilities!

 

Cracking the Flour Resist once dried

 

STEP TWO:  PAINT THE FLOUR RESIST

For this step you will need your chosen color of acrylic paint, water, small bucket, paint brush and gloves.  Hopefully you found some fun paints to try – I went with black!

Add 1 part paint to 1 part water in a small bucket, and stir with a wooden paint stirrer.  Once the acylic paint and water are mixed thoroughly, using your paint brush, begin to paint the on top of the flour paste resist.  You want to be generous with the paint, it needs to seep through the the cracks in the resist to get to the fabric.  

*Note: if you cracked the resist in specific areas, you’ll only need to paint those areas.

 

Applying Paint after Cracking the Flour Resist

Applying acrylic paint after Cracking the Flour Resist

Cracked Flour Paste Reist Results

To check if your paint is saturating, gently lift up a corner of the fabric where you added paint and look underneath.  If you didn’t squeal with excitement, you didn’t add enough paint!

After applying your color onto the resist, let the paint dry.  Use any of the 3 methods in Part Two, to dry the paint.  When the paint is fully dry it should be the same color where ever you applied it.  No dark wet spots!  If you notice some cracked areas are lacking color, re-apply paint to those spots and repeat the drying process.

dried paint after cracking the flour resist

> > > Part Four : Removing the Resist

> > Part Two: Preparing and Applying the Flour Paste Resist

> Part One:  Fabric Preparation 

 

Flour Paste Resist Tutorial | Part Two : Preparing and Applying the Resist

Now that your fabric has been prepared, it is time to mix the flour paste and slather it onto your clean and dried fabric! Yaaay!  *If you have not prepared your fabric you can find the steps on how to do so, in Part One of this tutorial!

 

STEP ONE: PREPARING THE FLOUR PASTE RESIST

In this step you’ll need your flour, water, bucket, an electric drill w/mixing a bit and a pouring pitcher.

In a medium bucket, mix flour and cold water together using a whisk or spoon, or an electric drill with a mixing bit attached.  Mix this mixture to a pancake like consistency.  If you experience lumping, continue mixing to remove as many as you can.  Do not worry about exact measurements, but if it helps, I used about 3 – 4 cups of flour for my table runner. Once your mixture has reach a smooth pancake batter like concistancy, pour into a pitcher and set it aside to prep the fabric.

 

 

STEP TWO:  PREP WORK SURFACE AND SECURE FABRIC

In this step you will need 4 medium to large clamps to secure the fabric onto your work surface.

Cover your work surface with your plastic drop cloth, you can also secure this with clamps if you’d like.   Once your work surface is covered lay out your fabric on top of the plastic drop cloth.   Using 4 clamps, secure all corners of your fabric to the table.  Doing this makes applying the paste much easier as the fabric will want to slide around.  *Sorry I don’t have a picture for this step.

 

STEP THREE:  THE FUN PART!! APPLY FLOUR PASTE!

Yaaay! This is where the fun begins.  Here, you will need your pitcher of flour paste resist, a squeegee and gloves!

Grab your pitcher of flour paste, starting at one end of your fabric begin to pour a generous amount of the mixture onto your fabric.    Using your squegee, smooth out the paste on your fabric.  You don’t want to go too thin, so use a light hand when doing this step.  Continue this process down the entire length of the fabric (pour, then smooth, pour, then smooth)  until the material is fully covered with the flour paste resist. *you should not see the fabric through the paste – aim for an “opaque” coverage.

 

STEP FOUR : DRYING THE FLOUR PASTE

Once your fabric is covered with the flour paste, it will need to fully dry in order to crack it.  You can do one of three things for this step:

  1. Set fans around your work surface aiming them at your work. (leave on all 4 clamps)
  2. Dry the paste using a hair dryer on medium to high heat.
  3. Let the paste air dry (this is what I did).  This step takes about 12 – 24 hours, depending on the size of your material and the amount of paste poured.

As the paste dries, the fabric will curl up on the ends.  To prevent this you can leave all 4 clamps in place.  I removed 2 of the 4 clamps on my piece to allow the fabric to move freely.

 

> > >  Part Three : Cracking the Resist and Adding Paint

> > > > Part Four : Flour Resist and Paint Removoal

> Part One: Fabric Preparation

 

Flour Paste Resist Tutorial | Part One : Fabric Preparation

If you have been following along on my preparation for the Irvine Studio Arts Festival that took place on June 3rd, you’ll know that I made a cool table runner for my booth using a neat technique call Flour Paste Resist. It is very similar to Batik but instead of hot wax you are using a flour paste (like pancake batter) as your resistance.

In this blog post I am sharing the first few steps on this process. I had fun making my table runner using step by step instructions I found on-line.  I’m sharing MY process and results of this technique because, with any craft, results vary and your experience will be different from someone else’s. Plus, its fun to document experiments!

MY SUPPLY LIST

  1. Flour
  2. Plastic Drop Cloth
  3. Acrylic Paint
  4. Washing Soda or Soda Ash
  5. Squeegee or spreader
  6. Gloves
  7. Measuring-cup
  8. Dish Soap (not pictured)
  9. Fabric (not pictured)
  10. Mixer (not pictured)
  11. Table or flat work surface
  12. Table fans (optional)
  13. Wooden Paint Stirrer (not pictured)
  14. 4 Medium or Large Clamps
  15. Pouring Pitcher 

 

STEP ONE:  WASH YOUR FABRIC

This is important, as most to all fabrics have been treated during the milling process.  You want to remove all of the grease/coating so the fabric can be respective to the dye/paint.  Skipping this step will cause disappointing results, as the dye/paint will not get deep into the fibers.  Your fabric will be “stained” instead of dyed.*  To remove these treatments,  simply:

Wash the fabric on HOT with about  1/2 to 1 cup of dawn or any other degreasing dish soap.  I used 1 cup for my 6’x3′ runner.  YES, this is going to cause a LOT of bubbles….but if you’re like me, you’ll enjoy it and take pictures of them! Do not dry after washing.  Set your fabric aside in preparation for the next step. 

 

STEP TWO:  SOAK FRESHLY WASHED FABRIC

This is another important step.  Soaking the fabric in Washing Soda or Soda Ash, raises the ph levels of the fabric which aids in the fabrics ability to take the dye/paint.

Mix about 1/2 cup of Washing Soda into a gallon (or more) of warm water and mix well using a paint stirrer (you can get them at your local hardware store).  Once the Washing Soda is dissolved in the warm water, submerge your fabric into the mixture.  Leave the fabric in this mixture for at least 20 to 30 minutes.  I soaked for 2 hours.

 

STEP THREE:  PREPARE FABRIC FOR FLOUR PASTE

Now that your fabric has soaked in Washing Soda for at least 20 to 30 minutes (or 2 hours, as I did), it is time to ring it out.  If you are working with a large piece of fabric grab an extra pair of hands to make it easier.   With each of you holding either end of the fabric, turn in opposite directions (twisting the fabric) to remove access water.   I did this over my back lawn, and I notice a bit of yellowing grass the next day –  this went away after a few douses of the water hose.

Once the fabric is rung out, toss it in the dryer on the proper setting for your material, and dry thoroughly.  


Notice that the 100% cotton muslin that I used is rather wrinkled after drying.  I was okay with this since I was, after all, going for a “cracked” aesthetic.  Depending on what fabric you are using and the results you are going for, you may want to steam or iron your fabric after drying.  I encourage you to research the material you are working with; i.e. silk, cotton blends, wool, and how dyes/paints react to them.  This is where experimentation comes in – play around and see what happens.

> > Part Two : Preparing and Applying the Flour Pastes Resist

> > > Part Three : Cracking the Resist and Applying Paint

*references from Frost Yarn

Cracks on Fabric | Booth Design Inspiration

I’m gearing up for the Irvine Studio Arts Festival June 3rd.  The one thing I love about doing shows is digging into my creative bank for my booth design.

Today, I received a text from one of my creative buddies, Nicole Frost of Frost Yarn.  She’s an amazing dyer, spinner, crocheter, knitter based in Orange County, who specializes in bright rainbow, psychedelic color ways that people can’t seem to get enough of.  She blows me away with her passion and excitement for her craft.  She, too, will be part of the Irvine Studio Arts Festival.

Anyway, Nicole text’d me to see if I’d like her make me a table runner for the festival, as it is mandatory that we have one.  She had just finished making one for herself, using an “ice dyeing” method and bright ass, Nicole Frost, colors (almost like tie-dye but less hippie more “spacey”).  Of course my fist reaction was…

“hmm, well, don’t do bright colors, but maybe the right palette will bring some attention to my booth …”

So I asked Nicole if she was able to do a lightning strike effect on the fabric using neutral colored dyes….like greys and browns, and blacks, that may work.  She responds “Yes, I can TOTALY do that!”.  Now I’m excited! My brain starts searching…

“oooooh, what about creating cracks on the fabric with dye?”

By then I pretty much have my booth design in my head.  I’m more excited.  This is great!  Let me do a quick search on Pinterest for some visuals…after scanning pictures for about 2 minutes, I find my inspiration:


 

This gorgeous technique is call Flour Paste Resist.  It is very similar to the batik process.  You basically create a paste using a mixture of flour and water, spread it onto fabric, allow it to dry and manipulate it as you like.  I have not tried this yet, as I literally discovered the process today!

Even though, Nicole offered to do the dyeing for me, I kind of want to try it out myself!  I have some ideas on using this pattern in some areas of my branding.  It correlates so well with my current work.

I have a feeling this is going to be something fun!

You can check out Scrap Bags Sew Patterns Blog if you wish to learn more about Flour Paste Resist.  I will be sure to post progress pictures once I get started on booth displays and this inspiring dyeing process.  Until then, I need to go make more jewelry!

thanks for reading,

cv

*photo credit: Scraps Bags Sew Patterns