A DIY fabric project using light-sensitive dye

Another project in the Inkodye series. This time I tried to get fancy with the light-sensitive dye and see if a drawing could be transferred onto fabric. (Click the image above to view a little larger.) Mixed results this time.

To make this fabric, I stretched out a piece of Saran wrap and taped down the corners to keep it taut. Then I drew on it with a black DecoColor paint pen. I needed something very opaque that would write on plastic, and this was perfect.

I thought the fine lines would be a good test to see how crisp the final print would turn out.

Then I removed the drawing and taped a piece of white cotton to my waterproof surface (i.e. cardboard wrapped with plastic). I applied red-orange Inkodye with a foam brush. Next I blotted off as much dye as I could. This was recommended in what I'd read on the manufacturer's site. Apparently if you plan to cover your damp surface with plastic or a piece of glass, water will tend to condense on the underside of the glass. And that will produce pale spots on your print. The idea is to get your surface as dry as possible, so let's see if the blotting method solves the problem.

I stretched the Saran wrap drawing over the treated fabric and taped it down, then placed the fabric in direct sunlight for 5 minutes. I was bummed to see some condensation start to appear between the plastic and the fabric, sure enough.

When the color looked fully developed, I immediately brought the fabric inside, untaped it, and rinsed it under a faucet. Then I washed it thoroughly by hand in water with laundry detergent. Overall the design is cute, but you can see light areas where water from the condensation diluted the dye. They're noticeable when you click the first photo in this post to view it larger. And some of the lines aren't as perfectly crisp as this stickler would like. The upshot: if you want a perfect print, this probably isn't the method to use. But it was fun!

Someone wondered in the comments on a previous post what the back side of the dyed fabric looks like. Here it is. And I haven't washed this in the machine yet, but I'll give you a report when I do. I don't expect the color will fade much, if at all.

Update: After machine washing, I'd say the color faded a little bit. But not too badly.

You can check out previous projects using Inkodye here and here.
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