Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Saying goodbye

Before it's too late, I want to let everyone know that the blog known as "And Then We Set It On Fire" will stop posting new content the last of this month.   Thankfully, they are leaving the blog intact so you can peruse it at your own leisure.  They are a fabric blog that deals mostly in surface design and fabric dyeing.

How they got the name of the blog:
A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.
Some of the topics they have covered include:


As many of you frequent visitors to my blog know, I love rocking horses and I love rust.
 One lady who taught about rust was very informative.  I don't usually say that about people who rust fabric,

because they often forget the safety issues involved with rust.  This woman knew her stuff, and I was quite grateful.

I have experimented with rust on fabric

and on paper.  Both require special handling.

Eco Dyeing 

Along the lines of rust dyeing is Eco dyeing.    I've had ho-hum success,

marginal success

decent success,

and phenomenal success with this technique.  I started using an alum mordant shortly after I made these pieces.  Somehow, I don't see much difference using versus not using mordants.

Shibori Dyeing

Although there were many examples of shibori dyeing on the Fire blog, no one seemed to create shibori discharge dyeing.  I wrapped the fabric, then discharged it (removed the color) using bleach.

Sadly this fabric was in bleach less than a minute.  Even so, it turned a rust brown nearly as soon as it hit the bleach water.  Just goes to show that black can turn gray, brown, rust, or gold, depending on the fibers used in the weave of the fabric.

These were created using fabric spray paint I won in exchange for a tutorial showing various shibori folds.

Most of the dyeing on the Fire blog dealt with permanent dyes you had to mix with harsh chemicals.  I used Staz-on reinkers and got these.  No, the color didn't wash out when I laundered the fabric.

Snow Dyeing

Again, I don't believe in harsh chemicals to dye my fabrics.

Rather than use chemicals, I turned to food coloring

and dye inks.

They turned out better than I anticipated.  While they were melting, I thought they looked like snow cones in which all the syrup was being sucked out.

Corn Syrup Resist

This is a horribly sticky technique, but instead of harsh dyes advocated by the Fire blog, I used Staz-on along with my corn syrup.

One thing I can say about this technique is, you can do it in the winter.  Unlike flour, oatmeal, and other kitchen products you use as a resist, which must be removed outside, this washes out easily in your sink and doesn't clog your drain.  It's like washing a dish that had syrup left on it.  These two fabrics have been washed and ironed.  I think they turned out super, even if I didn't get the freezer paper ironed on as well as I had hoped.

Flour and Oatmeal Resist

Again, I called on my Staz-on to provide the color for these.

After these were rinsed (outside) and laundered, but prior to ironing, I hung them on my rail for a photo of the various resists.  They are from left to right: flour, oatmeal, oatmeal, flour, flour.

Another flour resist, it was my favorite and I used it as soon as it was dry.

Turmeric Dyeing

Another kitchen item I experimented with was turmeric.  I was so proud of these pieces, even though I used far too much turmeric and alum (the mordant) in the dye bath.

Sun Dyeing

For years I believed the hype that you had to buy a special dye in order to sun dye.  It seems the ONLY place you can buy it is on the internet.  I decided to see if I could use my fluid acrylics to sun dye fabric.

Even though I rushed the process and removed the rocking horses too soon (something I didn't do the first time I sun dyed fabric), I was still quite pleased with how this second journal cover came out.

Other dyeing projects I have completed include grape juice, onion skins, blackberries, tea, and coffee.  I look forward to continuing my unique way of dyeing, because I get good results and don't use harsh chemicals that must be mixed, then removed into the environment.

Although I love the Fire blog, it is painfully obvious I didn't learn much from their blog posts, and am not the surface designer or dyer their design team members are.  I did want to pay tribute to them, though.  And I will miss checking the blog every few months to see what is new.  So, good bye Fire blog.  Your new posts will be sorely missed by many who want to learn about surface design and "real" dyeing practices. 

19 thoughtful remarks:

Valerie-Jael said...

Sorry you are losing a blog which you evidently enjoyed a lot. Lovely to see all your various attempts at dyeing and the lovely results, it's always fun experiementing. Have a fun day, hugs, Valerie

chrissie said...

Such a shame when a blog you loved closes but it seems you have learnt so much there and that will stay with you forever I'm sure. You can use the things your learnt there to make your own versions and inspire others I reckon.

Love Chrissie xx

Sami said...

What a pity that such an informative blog to the crafts community is closing.
Your dying techniques are amazing, some of the fabrics look as if they could be painted with silk paints.
I did a bit of silk painting many years ago and loved it.

froebelsternchen Susi said...

What a FANTATSIC post - you made such wonderful things over the years Elizabeth!
Thanks for the link, even though they stop posting- I will check out there tutorials for sure!
oxo Susi

nanskidrewski said...

I love the patterns and colors. It does remind me a little of silk. Painting. The blue and purple one is my favorite. The rocking horse is cool too. Nice to see them all hanging out to dry and display on your front porch railing.

CJ Kennedy said...

I've never dyed fabric. I knew you could use natural items like onions or cabbage. Had no idea about using flour or oatmeal to achieve effects. Like the way the fabric looks hanging on your porch rails.

Nancy said...

Wow- you've tried it all with wonderful results. Your turmeric dyeing is a favorite, but corn syrup? And flour? Both nice results. I like eco-dyeing, but it's too complex and messy for me. It's good the blog will remain as a resource. By the way, the "fishing line" thread you mentioned in your comment on my blog is way different than the Invisi-fil thread. It's very soft and "cottonized" (their term) so you don't get that breakage you noted. I think you'd like this kind much better.

Meggymay said...

I got a real shock when I read the post title and then calmed down as to why you were writing this post. it is sad when thing change.
I loved seeing all your fabrics and seeing the super colours and fantastic effects you got with your own dying experiments.
Yvonne xx

Sandra Cox said...

I had no idea of all the different things you could use for dyes.
Love the rocking horse piece and the food coloring dye results.
What are the safety issues with rust?

sheila 77 said...

Oh I loved reading about all your different ways to dye/paint fabric. I haven't done this for ages but am inspired to try some of the techniques you show here. I especially like the resist techniques and I've never thought of using Staz-on on fabric but will certainly try it.
Also thanks for the link to this blog, it looks fascinating.

Sandra Cox said...

Thank you, Elizabeth! That was above and beyond! Much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

There is so much great eco dye info out there, and I've had good success with iron pots, and plants in the fabric in my solar oven. Works a charm...Heavy rubber gloves and good tongs a must. I do like some of the shibori techniques, the more free form like you achieved. Great overview. Thanks! xox

Rita said...

At least they are leaving their content up. That's a plus.
You have done so much with dying over the years. I am sure you will miss new content. :)

Jeanie said...

It sounds like a great blog and I'm sorry I'm just discovering it. Thanks for the mention and the word that the posts will remain!

Pamela Gerard said...

Yes, it is sad to lost a blog you really like a lot.....I think a lot of bloggers give up when they get few comments. Instagram gives me much more feedback and comments etc but I try to plug along and put up a blog post every so often....and YOU have been busy experimenting and dyeing and having fun. Nice work...

My name is Erika. said...

There are so many gorgeous fabric all together today Elizabeth. What eye candy-I really enjoyed this post. I didn't know about some of these dyeing techniques as I'm really just a beginner. Very cool.
And let me answer the questions you asked in your comment to me. First of all, I don't know if the new owners of the lighthouse actually live there. I am guessing they don't, but even though they bought the lighthouse for $1, they need money to help their work. You can walk to the lighthouse for free, but to take the tour they charge you. We thought it a worthwhile fee to pay so we took the tour-they didn't charge us for our daughter even though she is a 25 year old. :) Part of their renovations and saving the lighthouse included saving the light keeper's home, which you need to walk through to go up the lighthouse. And the black rocks in Iceland are lava- as you know, but these rocks are granite. However, they are covered in this green-brown colored seaweed which dries out and turns black, so that's what you see in the photos.
Hope you're not in the track of any of those big storms they were showing on the news.

pearshapedcrafting said...

Oh Elizabeth if only I didn't have to rush so much I could have spent a loooong time looking at this post and the link you provided! I will return to this when we get back! Have great weekend Hugs, Chrisxx

Cindy McMath said...

I loved seeing so many of your dyeing experiments in one post. Two standouts for me are the turmeric and the phenomenal eco dyeing. Amazing!

kathyinozarks said...

very informative. I did allot of rust dyeing when we first moved down here-it was so much fun. I need to dig out some of those pieces. I don't think I mordant before the rust dyeing-thinking rust sollution could be a mordant?? I have not tried resist, always wanted to try batik-I even have the soy wax somewhere here