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TOPIC: Using Salt to create patterns?

Re: Using Salt to create patterns? 29 May 2011 12:20 #65374

  • lotti
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hello dawna,
i used to do some silk painting and also used salt for effects.
the salt attracts the color, absorbing the moisture, making dark rings, streaks, grain or tear effects in some places flower-like clusters (a little like chrisanthemums).
according to my old silkpainting basics booklet (Seidenmalerei - Grundtechniken, by Ursula Kuehnemann), the fabric (dye) cannot be too moist, i.e. if there is "standing" water the salt cannot absorb the moisture, if it is too dry - no moisture to absorb...
the salt (works only with large grains as the small ones don't really absorb enough - there won't really be a significant effect) should be removed as soon as the fabric is dry, otherwise the salt may "eat" or weaken the fabric. if you only want the salt-effect in some places - then make sure the other areas are completely dry. make sure all the salt is removed and washed out as soon as possible.
salt is great if the dye has turned out too dark and you want to lighten it up, or want fuzzier lines.
i have also found that if it was not completely set before washing - the salt effect could also go - possibly depends on the paint used.

only tried this for a little while as i decided early on that this is not really my thing - so am not an expert and have not really done anything in this line in the last 10 years or so...
have fun experimenting :)

just found a couple of links you might find useful:

looking at that youtube video - i think i'll have to start experimenting again :wink: :wink:
Last Edit: 29 May 2011 12:35 by lotti.
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Re: Using Salt to create patterns? 29 May 2011 11:02 #65373

Thanks Margo, that is a great site! I bookmarked it, but it doesn't seem to have what I'm looking for however. I can find lots of information about adding salt to the recipe for richer colors, etc., but what this woman had done involved sprinkling salt on the fabric at some point in the process. It made drop-like marks and it seemed like the dye had moved away from the large salt grains.
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Re: Using Salt to create patterns? 29 May 2011 10:39 #65372

  • Margo
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Dawna, I've never done this, but there seems to be a lot of information available through this web site:


Good luck!

It's Not What You Gather, But What You Scatter
That Tells What Kind Of Life You Have Lived !
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Using Salt to create patterns? 29 May 2011 09:25 #65367

Hi! I am new to dying and am having a great time trying things out. (Just what I needed, another hobby...) I remember asking someone years ago about an interesting effect I saw on her fabric and she told me that it was done by putting coarse salt on the fabric. I've tried a couple different methods but haven't had any success. I got the right effect once, but when I rinsed the fabric it went away. Does anyone have any suggestions for me?
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