Wednesday, 16 October 2013

A Special Housewarming Present - Block Printing onto Textiles

I've been trying out Speedball's new Fabric Block Printing Ink (not sponsored, I bought it from with my very own pennies) and, thus far, I think it's brill.

My younger brother recently moved in with his girlfriend and turned a ripe old 29, and I combined the two happy events to make one big fat present. I'd originally planned on making a printed lampshade for him and his lovely lady-friend, but then I realised that I had no idea if they even own a lamp (I would also have had to learn how to make a lampshade). I do know, however, (thanks to our mum's covert intelligence) that they bought themselves a swanky new king-size bed, so I decided that a handsome, hand-printed duvet set would go down well. My brother's always loved pigs - he had one called Dotty when we were growing up - so a porcine theme seemed appropriate.

I went for a simple repeat pattern of four piggies on the duvet cover, plus a couple of little piglets for the pillow cases. They're some of The Bro's favourite breeds; Saddleback, Gloucester Old Spot, Kune Kune and a wee Tamworth piglet.

The ink took about two full days to be touch-dry, hanging on a make-shift washing line indoors, and if I hadn't already been late sending the parcel off I would have left it another day or two just to be certain. Speedball state that the ink doesn't need heat-setting like most fabric inks, but that you should give it at least a week before you do any washing. For posting I folded it up with plenty of tissue paper to make sure no residual ink messed anything up.

I hope they like it!

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

A Prickly Print and Some Sneak Peeks

Here's a little wood engraving I've done for Rowan's mum's birthday. She'll be in the Italian mountains on the big day, where these crested porcupines are quite common. I used four practice off-cuts of similar height to make a tetraptych of sorts and, as the outline was going to be so jaunty, I thought I'd roll with it and make him kinda jazzy too.

Sorry for the lack of updates recently; I've been working on a long commission and I'm afraid I can't really show you anything from it yet. Here's a wee snippet though, to tide you over:

Recognise the three cities from those little crops? There are plenty of others besides, of cities all over the world, hopefully coming soon!