Last weekend I was super excited when my marbling kit arrived. This was a chance to try a fresh new way of creating patterns and then who knows maybe some new products for Christmas.
I had always been a bit intimidated by the process thinking there was way to many steps for my patience. Mixing the special bath for the inks and treating the fabric or paper before hand... No thanks.
Turns out its not that hard and you get fun, pretty results. Whats not to like.
You're going to need:A marbling kit (I got a Jacquard one from ebay) it includes:
- Alum - mordent for treating the fabric and paper.
- Methocel - this makes your marbling base or "size".
- Set of marbling inks.
- A bowl and whisk for mixing the marbling size.
- A bucket and sponge for treating your fabric and paper
- Spoon measurers and a measuring jug.
- A shallow tray 2"-3" deep, with enough room to layout your fabric or paper.
- Straws or eye droppers to apply inks.
- Newspaper combs, skewers or rakes for creating swirly marbling patterns ( I like to use my trusty pom pom making fork).
Dissolve 1/4 cup or 4 tablespoons of of alum powder into 1 litre of warm water.
Fabric: For best results use a pre washed fabric. Soak your fabric in the alum water and leave for about 20 minutes wring out and let dry. Iron fabric before marbling being careful not to scorch the fabric.
Paper: Sponge alum solution onto one side of your paper and let it dry on a flat surface. make sure you remember what side you coated, thats your marbling side.
Step Two: Prepare your "size".
Carefully mix 4 tablespoons of methocel powder into 1 litre of warm water. Make sure it's all mixed in this is where the whisk comes in handy. Transfer your size into the marbling tray and leave to set for approximately 30 minutes you should have a jelly like liquid in the tray.
Step Three: It's Marbling time.
Yay its finally time to get creative, start dropping your inks into the size making sure you do this as close to the surface as you can this will stop the inks from sinking to the bottom. Some colours will spread out faster than others. Once you've got your colours begin swirling and drawing the inks around using your fork or combs creating lots of lovely pattern.
Step Four: Time to dip.
Carefully lay your fabric or paper onto the "size" (the middle of the fabric should touch first) being careful not to get any air bubbles. Leave for a few seconds and then remove, rinse with warm water. You should be left with some pretty cool patterns. Hang out to dry.
Cover "size" in newspaper to clean and the start again.
Here's my favourite creation from my new marbling obsession.
If you give marbling a try I'd love to see the results just tag us on Instagram. Check out my new marbled products on our Etsy site.