Friday, February 5, 2016

Rust Day

Within the past couple of weeks, we've had tea dyed rust day, mordant day, and faux rust day.  This is REAL rust day.  No tea, no paint, just rust without the use of tannins or other mordants.  In other words, just materials needed for rusting both fabric and paper.  Today we focus on rust and more rust.  As always, I begin each tutorial with the supplies I will use.

From back left clockwise:

Waterproof or water resistant covering (I used a pink plastic bag) to keep a mess off your work table
Steel wool (fine) found at any hardware or big box home improvement store
Cans, lids, etc. that have sat in water for weeks on end
Fabric (old bed sheet)
Disposable gloves to keep the rust out of your blood system
Pieces of fabric (old bed sheet) cut to start a tear, then torn to size
Rusty cookie sheet enclosed in yet another pink plastic bag.

Make sure you are wearing your gloves before you pick up a rusty piece to measure the fabric.  I know some people wonder why I am so adamant about wearing gloves when I handle rust, but the truth is, rust in any form affects the hemoglobin in your blood stream.  This is especially true if you have a cut or cat scratch on your hands (HMMM!!).

Hemoglobin is the protein that contains iron found in all red blood cells.  It enables red blood cells to bind to oxygen in the lungs and carry it to tissues and organs throughout the body.  Low amounts of hemoglobin can cause anemia which could result in fatigue, paleness, shortness of breath, headaches, and distorted vision, to name a few symptoms.   So please, if you do nothing else, or learn nothing else during this tutorial, wear disposable gloves when picking up a rusty piece.

My tin cans and lids have rusted nicely, just as I'd hoped would happen.  I don't buy many cans, so this is an accumulation since last summer.

Next I removed my rusty cookie sheet from the bag I keep it in.  I am also adamant about keeping my rusty pieces in plastic bags, since I don't want them accidentally rusting other metal I don't want rusted.  That's also why I don't keep these rusted metal pieces in my garage.

I began by laying down a piece of copier/printer weight paper on my cookie sheet.  I placed a few pieces of rusted metal on top of the paper.

I added a second layer of paper and rusty bits,

then a third layer.  I now have cookie sheet, paper, rusty bits, paper, rusty bits, paper, rusty bits.  You can see I've already accidentally smeared bits of rust from the rusty bits onto the paper.  Just imagine what your hands would look like right now if you weren't wearing gloves!

For my top layer, I placed a few rusty items with threads on the paper.  For my final layer, I added a sheet of copier/printer paper (80 lb).  I then stuck these in the pink bag.

Next came this rusty piece that I wrapped in the torn bed sheet.

To keep it intact, I also wrapped two pieces of copper wire around the fabric and placed it inside the pink bag.

For my final piece, I took one of my rusty cans

and unraveled one of the steel wool pads I have designated for crafts only.

Now that the steel wool was completely unwrapped and wrapped around the rusty can,

I used my final piece of torn bed sheet and wrapped it around and inside the rusty can.

I had no more copper wire, but I had coated copper wire which began life as part of an old telephone cord (wire).

I wrapped and rewrapped until I was satisfied with the configuration.

I added it to the pink bag and took a photo of all the pieces I intended to rust. 

Then I saturated everything well with white vinegar.  By the time I was finished saturating, the paper was laying nearly flat against the cookie sheet.

All that was left was to tie the bag shut to keep the moisture in, and WAIT.  And wait we shall!

Thanks for visiting today.  I hope this hasn't been a disappointment, because rusting fabric OR paper takes time and patience.  Since this will be sitting in my cold basement studio, I need more patience than I would normally need if I could take this outside to bake in the sun.  Again, thanks for your support of my experiments.

9 thoughtful remarks:

Caterina Giglio said...

What a great tutorial! I loved it, E... and I am with you on the gloves! I cannot bear those photos of artists with all kinds of products on their hands, the labels on all paints and mediums are clear that they contain chemicals that may cause disease.... and where do they go when you use your hands? I cannot wait to see the reveal ... reminds me of Seth's project so long ago!! x

Halle said...

I'll be anxious to see the big reveal.

froebelsternchen said...

Oh wow... exciting Elizabeth ! I am looking forward to see the reveal!

Happy weekend my friend!

Valerie-Jael said...

What a fun day you had. Thanks for showing all the steps how you do it, and I am very much looking forward to seeing the results. Have a nice day, Hugs, Valerie

Jo Murray said...

I am SO looking forward to the results. Bet they are fabulous.

My name is Erika. said...

What an interest week of blog posts. I can't wait to see your final rusty results. Do you have any specific plans to use all these rusty materials once they are done or are you just making to make. I love to just make to make-sometimes that is the art (and science) itself, but sometimes it is fun to make something with a plan in mind. Hope your weekend starts off in a good way! Hugs!

Meggymay said...

A fantastic tutorial and super photos to show us what you were doing.
look forward to seeing the results something in the future,
Yvonne xx

~*~Patty S said...

You tease you :-)
Waiting for the results is well worth it I'm sure E!
Great tutorial and photos to show your process.
You sure do have some wonderful rusty bits.
Can't wait to see how it all turns out.

pearshapedcrafting said...

I love looking at how you do your rusting - this time it looks especially exciting! Look forward to the big reveal! Hugs Chrisx