Decolourant: more play

I mentioned carving stamps as play, then I used a couple simple ones with soy wax as I prepared for indigo-day. By today, I had read enough book chapters and watched enough videos to try the Jacquard decolourant I ordered some time ago. (It used to be called “discharge paste” but I guess people thought that sounded gross.)

In the final analysis, it’s pretty straightforward: apply paste to dyed cloth; let dry; steam with iron to “develop” color removal; wash.

Overdyed apron with soy wax doodles

One thing giving me pause was the insistent message to use a respirator when steaming the cloth. I don’t like toxic stuff. But I do have a supply of paper dust masks for when I’m measuring out powdered dye. BUT, apparently dust masks aren’t the same as vapor masks, so… I bought a basic one. An aside: dust masks make me very claustrophophic. I don’t know how people/healthcare professionals can wear them for any length of time. The respirator is one serious piece of equipment, but luckily it isn’t as suffocating as a paper mask.

Ok, long story short, I got out one of the aprons I dyed with Procion MX celery, then overdyed with indigo. I started out with a little squeeze bottle, but decided to bite the bullet and use my stamps. The top part wound up being a little too experimental, too busy (i.e., ugly). But this middle part… nice. Giving me confidence to do more. (While I’m getting better at carving the stamps, my use of them has thus far been somewhat disastrous.)

Decolourant stamped onto dyed cotton
Decolourant stamped onto dyed cotton

Baby steps. Another try, below. Sadly, the interesting results disappeared after I washed the indigo-dyed cotton. I guess Decolourant doesn’t work on indigo. Hmmm.

Stamped Decolourant on indigo-dyed cotton (results were, sadly, fugitive)

Wine poured.

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