How I did it!

Thank you for all your comments and suggestions. It is very encouraging! A few of you have asked how I did the screenprinting. Well, apart from telling you to buy Leslie and Claire’s book, here is a bit of a guide! I’m not really sure how it happens but here goes!

This is the photo of the screen which I published last week. I have put dye on it in three colours, thickened with print paste, in different amounts on the screen. Then I pressed various things into it to make a sort of texture.

screen with lots of dye on it and all sorts of strange things pressed into it

I left that till it was completely dry (took about 3 days) and took the objects out of it. It then had dried on dye (thickened) in varying depths. I then screenprinted through it, first with clear printpaste (using sodium alginate which is a thickener) and then with thickened dyes as it broke down.

The dry dye on the screen gradually dissolved and went through on to the fabric – the thinner areas first (like the bits which had had the objects pressed into them, and areas I had left thin) so the thicker dye on the screen acted like a resist and stopped the dye paste going through, to make the patterns. Gradually the rest broke down, all the time adding dye to the fabric, but also making the patterns.

I hope this is a bit clear – it still sounds fairly unclear to me but then I’m not sure how exactly it happens. It just does!! When I used the thickened dyes, they went through the screen where there was no dried on dye left, and some of the dried on dye dissolved also and left another colour. Duh. My brain hurts…..

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