Wednesday, March 18, 2009

March Tart Kit: Starch Crackle

This month will be an experiment with starch crackle. The kit contains PFD fabric, Dye-na-Flow paint, wheat flour and rice flour. The process will take several days so be prepared!

Prepare your work surface. Tape the PFD fabric down. Mix the flour according to the directions in your kit. Make sure there are no lumps. It should resemble pancake batter. Pour it along the top edge of your fabric and with the card pull the batter down the length of the fabric until there is an even layer of flour paste on the fabric. If you want to make a picture, with the craft stick, make your mark before the flour paste dries. As the paste/fabric dries, it will curl and become hard. This usually takes overnight.

When the paste has dried thoroughly, remove the tape and crinkle the fabric to create hairline cracks in the flour. The more you crinkle, the more cracks. Snap the fabric and brush off the excess flour dust.

Retape the fabric for painting. The paint you use needs to be very watered down - the consistency of milk. Dye-na-Flow is perfect. It does not need to be thinned. However, an acrylic will need to have water added to get the correct consistency. Without putting too much paint on the brush, brush paint over the surface of the flour. Be careful about oversaturating. If the back gets solid looking, you have overpainted.

This is an example of the back of a piece that has been painted.

You now must let the paint dry and cure for at least 24 hours. You will not be able to heat set the paint before it is washed so the longer you wait between painting and washing the better the color. Soak the painted fabric in water to remove the flour paste. Wash thoroughly with a little soap, rinse, and dry. Press the final piece.

Use this one of a kind fabric however you like. It can be overdyed, painted, stamped, or foiled before sewing into your art piece.