Sunday, January 30, 2011

Technique book pages - dryer sheets

My next foray into backgrounds was to delve into the possibilities of using dryer sheets!! After some internet research I would caution that some believe that the chemicals contained in dryer sheets are dangerous and should be avoided.
I worked with used dryer sheets - ones that had been used in the dryer many times but would consider washing them before using them the next time around. The techniques really work best with depleted sheets so if you choose not to use the dryer sheets you should launder them before you proceed. You may be able to obtain what you need by asking friends and family to save them
for you or to post to a Freecycle group and ask for what you need.
The basic idea is just to apply colour to the sheets to make them interesting. I used acrylic craft paint, glitter paint and acrylic ink on my pages. I attached the backgrounds to cardstock by capturing them between two layers using double sided tape. I attached the butterfly sequin using a glue dot which secured the butterfly and background to the cardstock.
For colour, you can also consider tea, coffee, dyes, liquid acrylic, textile paints, fabric dyes, reinkers, alcohol inks, spritz and mists - even Koolaid (no sugar)!! I lay the dryer sheets onto plain bond and used a brush to apply the paint and in some cases used several different colours on the same sheet. Because the dryer sheets are so thin the colour medium will soak through creating yet more background paper as you decorate the dryer sheets. Lay them out on a protected surface to dry. You can also consider soaking the sheets - plain or tied - in containers of colour medium, removing them later and laying them out to dry. Either way it is recommended that you iron the backgrounds to heat set the colour. To protect your iron it is best to press them between two sheets of bond paper. Once ironed they are ready to be used in your art!
Some people have stamped or stenciled them to add yet more dimension. Many textile artists are using them to layer into their mixed media art, quilters use them for several different techniques and they can be used to create embellishments in the same way that fabric or ribbon would be used.
There are two techniques that I read about while doing online research that I would like to try. One recommended layering the dryer sheet on a plastic or resistant surface (silicone) and painting it with white glue and sprinkling on glitter. This created a beautifully transparent material which was used to create dove and snowflake ornaments. I expect you could colour your glue with ink and get a coloured version. This may have the feel of fabric.
The other is to used dryer sheets to create "fabric paper". Lay the dryer sheet on a resistant surface and brush on thinned glue (1 part water to 2 parts glue). Then start layering on thin papers with thinned glue between each layer. Add cut out elements, paper napkins or even items such as lace and ribbon for colour and texture. Finish the piece with a layer of neutral tissue paper and a final layer of glue. I have been wanting to try this for a while though was sort out of the scope of this project so I have put it off yet again.
There is also a technique called "Dryer sheet technique" where you coat a colourful image with adhesive, layer on a dryer sheet and add glitter! Great for Christmas cards!! You can check it out here on Splitcoast Stampers.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave your comments