Blackcabbit (aka. Dionnie Takahashi) is an illustrator living in Japan. She loves drawing whimsical animal characters, as well as doing handmade crafts to beautify the world she lives in.
Even after the garage sale event, my nesting instinct was unyielding. So, I preoccupied myself with several sewing activites. For instance, I modified & sewed THREE double bed sized Bosui shiki pedo (防水敷パッド/waterproof mattress pad); sewed TWO fleece pants for my boy; and my favorite project…
Initially, I planned to use Japanese quilting (kiruthingu /キルティング), which are fabrics ready-sewn with quilting lines and batting. Most craft stores has a great selection of undoubtedly cute designs for kids but they are insanely expensive, and wider width are hard to come by. Since I need a strong fabric with over a 140cm-width, I chose Ikea’s TIDNY fabric. Of which, I find the reasonably-priced fabric’s line-works whimsical and interesting. Best of all, I can explore fabric painting with it (i.e. using Pentel Fabricfun Crayons & Liquitex Acrylic Paints mixed with fabric medium).
Unfortunately, the TIDNY fabric is often out of stock. I had to wait two weeks for the fabric to be available. Not wanting to waste precious time (in case my honey bun pop out earlier than expected), I roughly drew similar designs onto white cotton fabric to test the crayons and paints separately:
(1) After applying the colors, I heat set my test piece with a hot iron. [Placement: newspapers > white paper > test piece > white paper (again)] (2) As I ironed, the crayons melted and showed through the top white paper. (3) There was quite an amount of excess crayons absorbed. However, when I placed a new sheet of white paper on the test piece and ironed again, it was almost clean! (4) Here is the back view of the fabric. Okay, it is now machine washable.
Previously, I used cheaper acrylic paints (WITHOUT fabric medium) on my norens years ago. Unlike the sofa bed cover, the norens were artworks, not meant for laundering. However, out of curiosity, I hand-washed one of them to check whether washing would remove the colors. As a result, most of the colors were permanent except for black that had some extent of color run. Hence, I concluded that fabric medium is necessary to set the colors for good. I intend to get fabric medium from Liquitex but it was unavailable. So, I bought a cheaper and the only attainable alternative (by American Craft Life) instead.
Additional information can be found here: Can I paint on fabric using Liquitex Acrylics?
Crayons’ Pros: (1) Colors are vibrant. (2) Colors remained pretty much the same before and after machine wash.
Crayons’ Cons: (1) It turned out that the line-works are smaller on the actual TIDNY fabric. So, trying to color inside the lines using thick chunky crayons require great effort even for an adult. (2) Heat-setting is a necessary step, which may be messy and become a challenge when working on a big area. (3) Easily run out of crayons. Even with the small test piece, my crayons had shorten remarkably. (4) Thick applications can stiffen fabric and make it look waxy.
Acrylics’ Pros: (1) Endless color combination. (2) Color inside the lines can be easily achieved with a small fine brush. (3) It requires only a small amount of paint, water and a few drops of fabric medium to achieve good consistency for fabric painting. (4) Heat-setting is not required. (5) It was recommended to wait at least 4 days before washing but I did mine the next day. Yet, the colors remained pretty much the same before and after machine wash.
Acrylics’ Cons: (1) It is necessary to pre-wash the new fabric to remove sizing, which interferes with adhesion. (2) Thick paint will stiffen fabric. (3) Wet colors will dry lighter.