This was a three day project, with many, many photos, so it was only fitting to break it into a three day tutorial. I began by bringing my materials to the back yard "craft" table. However, the sun was already beating down, and I wasn't sure how long I would stay, since I believe I was a vampire in a previous life. Then I remembered to open the umbrella. Harder to get photos, but better on the artist/photographer.
Supplies from top left, clockwise:
Flour (any will do, I used whatever I had in that package marked "Flour for crafts")
Large bucket of water
Cream of Wheat (didn't get a chance to use this)
Fabric, prepared for dyeing (I used old sheet strips, so no need to prepare)
Plastic baggie to "protect" table (as if this table needs protecting)
As I was setting up the area, I realized I still needed:
Measuring cup (I used 1C)
Low tack masking tape
Not shown: another bucket to mix kitchen products in
I want to be clear that these materials/supplies are for craft purposes only. Nothing on this table will ever be used in food preparation, including the KITCHEN INGREDIENTS and the supplies. If you decide to recreate these techniques, please buy products and supplies dedicated to crafts ONLY. For example, do not use the measuring cup in food prep or the oatmeal for cooking purposes. It doesn't hurt to stay safe and cautious.
The first thing I did was lay out and smooth the baggie. Then I cut a piece of masking tape and laid it down over ONE end of a piece of fabric. I then pressed the tape into the fabric and baggie/table cover to ensure good adhesion.
I decided to start with oatmeal since I had never used it before. I measured out one part oats and two parts water,
then began to mix. It was at this point I realized I didn't know what I was doing, so added more oats, twice as many in fact!
After making the adjustment, I ended up using 3 parts oats to 1 part water. I suggest you start with more water than oats, as I did, and add a few oats at a time accordingly. You want the oats to be able to stand up and stay on the spoon. Call it serendipitous, or whatever, but I was lucky I got to play around with the formula.
Alternately, you can use cooked oats. From what I've read, they will provide a somewhat different outcome.
Begin by spreading the oatmeal out on the fabric with your spoon.
Any place there is no oatmeal, the dye will be absorbed in that area.
Hang your fabric in the sun or somewhere you don't care where oatmeal might fall.
Continue adding oatmeal to fabric until you have used all the oatmeal. This batch was enough for two pieces of fabric. I think the fabric may have been around 18 inches X 28 or so inches, but I didn't measure. I just tore the fabric with no regard to size. I used one piece of each color (pale and a bit darker blue) for these.
When you have used all the oatmeal, thoroughly clean your mixing bucket and spoon.
My next project used flour. I began with one cup of flour and one cup of water. I had to add a bit more flour, maybe about 1/4 C.
Here is the consistency I was looking for. These recipes aren't rocket science and you will probably have to adjust your recipe based on humidity, heat, and other conditions.
For the first fabric, I simply drizzled bits of flour from my spoon onto the fabric in no particular order. I thought they looked a bit like Oriental writing at first, but the more I drizzled, the less they looked like writing.
I hung the fabric on the line and noticed the oatmeal covered fabric was almost dry, at least on the surface.
For the second piece of fabric, I retreated to my craft room long enough to find these supplies. It was SO much cooler inside, and I was wondering if I would get through this batch of flour/water. Here I have a squeegee and some plastic canvas.
I positioned the plastic canvas under the fabric in what I was hoping would be a pleasing manner. I had to once again straighten and smooth the plastic baggie/table cover before I could replace the fabric.
This time I ran a bead of flour across the width of the fabric. I then ran the squeegee the length of the fabric, always beginning at the taped edge and working my way downward.
Isn't it awesome? I hope it dries and dyes as well as it appears while it's still wet.
I was afraid to move it, so I allowed the fabric to sit and the flour to set for awhile while I went inside to clean my tools and cool off a bit. Once the flour was less runny, I moved it to the clothesline.
For my final piece of flour resist fabric, I was just trying to empty the container so I could call it a day. It was obvious, I was not going to make a batch of Cream of Wheat "resist." It was far, far too hot by now and the shade was practically gone. So, I folded the umbrella and allowed this final piece to dry directly on the table.
The others were on the clothes line, all except one with their low tack tape still intact.
The oatmeal fabric is shown hanging on the line, and the final flour fabric is still on the table. Yes, the heat and sun were that intense.
Oatmeal . . . .
Flour . . . .
My favorite! I can't wait for it to dry. Remember, it's normal for the treated fabric to curl as it dries.
This was all I could finish in a single day. The heat and sun became too intense, and I had to retreat to the coolness of the AC. Please join me tomorrow for the second part of this three part (and three day) project.