textile supply woes

I need to “paint” some fabric like this.


Unfortunately, paint itself is not an option at present. The ones i have are too stiff on the chosen fabric to get a needle through, and bleeding fingers are not on my list of Happy Things. They also dry too fast to do the blending i want! I had thought of roughly “piecing” together scraps instead, but that meant too many layers. I could have done this on soluble, but noooooooooooo, Lalage is being a bitch these days and breaking threads left right and centre. (I HATE this model, worst machine i’ve EVER had. Miss my old White that went for 20some years. Kenmore  used to be a good value as workhorse machine and i had a different one for 16 years, but alas, with the current workroom one, not so much anymore.) So, dye it is, good ol’ Procion, hand painted on to satisfy the desire to if not duplicate then to simulate the above.


ARGH. I’m disturbed however, that i have to order from the US for my dyes, because not only is it on sale there, but the shipping cost is the same, and even with the currency conversion, it’s still cheaper……………and the jars are bigger! Sorry Maiwa, as much as i love love love you, i have to thank you Dharma (sigh). Even the ACAD shop has an abysmal assortment, though i suppose that’s due to the number of students who get there first!

I also have to order most of my threads from the States—local stores don’t carry enough–indeed some carry NONE, or haven’t the assortment, or the weights, or the prices….Calgary is severely lacking in places to get decent amounts of anything textile related! The only exception to this is Valdani in Edmonton, though unfortunately whenever i want to order, they are out of what i want!

Ya soldier on.

12 responses to “textile supply woes

  1. In this far corner of the world . . . well, I understand. I support local suppliers whenever I can but occasionally, just occasionally, I have to go to some giant store in the clouds. Even if I can find things locally stocks are usually limited. I’ve used all the black linen thread in a 100k radius and now I’m waiting, waiting , waiting, for the courier who will hopefully knock on my door today.

    As for the difficulty of getting dyes/paints to merge and run together like watercolour on fabric . . . I have some experiments of my own to do so I will be very interested to hear how yours go.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Have you tried using a thickener with dyes? It also gives you a lot of blendability. I started playing with this when I was printing linocuts on fabric,: i was applying it with a paintbrush. Super easy to stitch through as well as it just dyes where you print instead of sitting on top.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Deb’s right, Arlee, some sodium alginate would make things much easier I think.
    I sympathise with your supply woes. In this part of the world the closest thing to decent shops is a 3 hour drive away and even then you have to schlep over a huge city and its suburbs, so mail order it is for me too. The postage is a bitch though, especially from your part of the world. I have almost given up and taken to using good old DMC floss that I can get locally. But I miss the gorgeous over-dyed silks …. as you say, ya do what you can.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. alginate thickener is an excellent idea – try with dye-na-flow (jacquard), they are transluscent and affect the handle of the cloth much less tan paints, stay true to colour and colourfast after ironing or just leaving unwashed, lots of colours & they mix well – not natural sadly

    Liked by 1 person

    • As much as i love the natural dyes, i just can’t use them for the most part on this projected quite large size, with all the blending i need, not skilled enough, and don’t have the time for this one with a dead line. But after all, colour is colour and nothing wrong with properly applied “man mades”…..


  5. Thank you all, dear Blossoms! I had forgotten about alginate, mainly because previous trials ended in snail trails that just wouldn’t come out! ( https://albedoarlee.wordpress.com/?s=alginate ) That being said though, i’ll have to try a small bit again and see what happens. If not, i’ll just be merging the dyes by painting on the cotton i intend to use and pretending i’m doing a watercolour painting 😉


  6. OOOOO GOODIE GOODIE!!! The dyes shipped last night so *hopefully* by Monday, my last day off at the ffffFlower Mines during this season, i can slop it around and see what happens!


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