Thursday, January 31, 2013

"Batik" with Children

The art of batik is traditionally an Indonesian method of using a hot wax resist and dye to decorate cloth. Tik means "to dot" in Javanese. The artist literally draws with the wax and then dips the cloth in dye. The areas covered in lines of hot wax resist the dye and remain the original color of the cloth.


Using hot wax with children would be risky, so I have checked out several alternate methods. Some people use gel glue in place of the wax, but I have found that to be difficult to wash out of the cloth. Here is the method that I used for the pictured example:


Supplies: cotton fabric, squeeze bottle, flour, water, acrylic paint and/or fabric dyes


Directions: Mix flour and water to the consistency of pancake batter. Use a funnel to transfer mixture to your squeeze bottle. Place your fabric on a sheet of foil or cookie sheet since the flour and water will soak through the fabric and you will want a stable surface to move your piece so that it can dry overnight. "Draw" on the cloth with your flour mixture. Dry. I then covered the entire background with the light green acrylic paint, dabbing it on with a sponge. Before that dried, I used the little bottle of spray fabric paint to add some bursts of color. After the paint dried I rinsed away the flour with hot water and ironed the fabric. The result is slightly stiff, I imagine because of the acrylic paint, so the finished piece would work well as a wall hanging as opposed to turning it into something to wear. However, I imagine that if you were to stick with fabric dyes it would be much softer to the touch.

1 comment:

  1. Mahalo for sharing this EZPZ batik w/ children project. I can't wait to try it this spring w/ the tiny tots for our Dream Flags.