Last week I proposed to the STASH group that when we go on our annual retreat next month that we do a surface design project. I suggested flour paste resist on fabrics, which we have discussed before as something we wanted to try. Our retreat will give us the time to work through the process with plenty of drying time between steps. I volunteered to coordinate the project so I have been doing some experimenting to narrow down our options.
Here is my first experiment:
I have done resist dyeing using wheat flour and wondered if rice flour might yield different and interesting results. I found several recipes online. The first one I tried involved cooking the rice flour with water until it boiled and thickened. I spread it on a couple of pieces of white fabric. The first, above, I did nothing to. The second, below, I used a bamboo skewer to draw in the wet paste. Then I let both pieces dry thoroughly.
When they were dry I scrunched each one up to crack the paste, then I painted a layer of acrylic paint over one side and let it dry. When the paint was dry I washed out the rice paste. The results were pretty disappointing. Neither developed an interesting crack pattern, though the one with the scratched away pattern did show the pattern. My assessment was that the cooked rice paste spread too thin and penetrated the fabric too much to allow for good cracks.
Next I mixed the rice flour with water to form a paste and did not cook it. The paste went on thicker and began to crack as it dried. Here's a closeup of one little section of the fabric with the dried rice paste.
Once it was really dry I painted this piece with acrylic paint and let it dry.
When the paint was very dry I washed the rice paste out of the fabric. The paint that was sitting on top of the rice paste also washed away. The paint that seeped into the cracks left a wonderful pattern on the fabric.