At the Make It exhibition way back in February, Cayden and I attended a two hour workshop. It was run by a representative of a company called Powertex, who make fabric and textile stiffeners and associated bits and pieces. The particular workshop we attended was to, as the workshop programme said: “decorate a bottle using a range of Powertex products and various pigments.”
Cayden and I love to do workshops and we’d tried most of the other crafts on offer, so we turned up excitedly for this one. It was quite a long session, but that’s because there was so much to learn. It was a little difficult to see what was going on in the demonstration because of the way they’d positioned us, but we managed.
The original demonstration was a little bit dull, but it was choc-a-block full of information. And there were some tips from the other participants too. Powertex works best on certain types of fabric, and apparently if you burn a scrap of cotton it turns to ash rather than melting. I never knew that, although it does make sense now.
Once the demo was over, we got stuck in. Literally. There was a lot of goo.
We’d been told several times by the demonstrator not to over saturate our scraps of fabric, so everyone was a little bit timid. It took us a long time to get things properly saturated.
The basic method was to soak fabric pieces in the Powertex stiffener and apply to your bottle, adding anything you’d like to add texture, like the little clay faces and hearts they provided us with.
Once you’d got your bottle fully covered, without getting too much on yourself if possible, the bottles need to dry. They had a fantastically genius method of doing this at the workshop. They had an old display cabinet that they’d cut a hole in the top and applied a hair dryer to, so we only had to wait twenty minutes or so rather than the two days it would take naturally.
The next step was adding the highlights with the pigments. Pretty pretty pigments.
I’m not so good with brushes. I have very little control, and can be very heavy handed. There were some excellent tips from the demonstrators, such as brushing as much off as you can onto a scrap of paper… or the handy table wrapping.
But I did manage to come up with a completed bottle. Eventually.
It’s not so great. Cayden did a much, much better job with his.
I’m very intrigued by this Powertex. I have a few ideas for it in the future, but they’ll have to be quite a way in the future. My ideas list is quite long 🙂