Way-Easy Guide to Painting Textiles With Kindah Khalidy
Kindah Khalidy hand-paints little cotton tanks and canvas pouches with knock-your-socks-off, abstract motifs, and, whether or not you have the vision to go all wearable work-of-art, you can definitely DIY your own fabric. Enter: stencils and a tutorial from a chick who knows just what she’s doing.
+ Fabric of choice (canvas or cotton do well)
+ Kindah’s stencil (download here!) or your own drawn shapes
+ Cardstock or a manila envelope
+ Stencil paint brush with a round and thick bristle
+ Cup of water
+ Paint palette for mixing colors
+ Masking tape or blue painter’s tape
+ X-Acto knife
+ Pencil or pen
+ Cutting mat
+ Fabric paint, such as Deco Art SoSoft or Jacquard Lumiere. (Note: Some paints require that you prewash the fabric.)
Step 1: Start with a clean, ironed piece of fabric so you can work with an even surface. Choose your shapes. [Ed: Kindah provided some options—or, duh, you can draw your own!] Remember that you will be cutting out the positive space. Think about incorporating alternative shapes into your design. For example, you could have one main flower stencil and then then different leaf stencils to mix it up. You can also create multiple stencils to layer over each other.
Step 2: Cut out the drawn shapes with an X-Acto knife. Then cut around the shapes, leaving enough space around the cutouts so you can tape it down to the fabric and have some room to paint over without messing up the fabric. You can group small shapes together. Place your stencils onto fabric and tape the stencils down so that they don’t move during the painting process.
Step 3: Mix the colors in the palette. Dab a little bit onto the brush. Too much paint will leak over the stencil, so use sparingly and do a few tests to find the right amount. Press the stencil down around edges while you are painting to prevent paint from leaking out the edges. Paint over the edges of the stencil to make sure that you get the entire shape filled. Let the paint dry before lifting up the stencil. When dry, move the stencil around to create a repeat composition.
Step 4: Layer stencils to create more intricate designs, or go in with a paintbrush for a more hand-done look. Most paints require that you heat-set the fabric after painting, so iron your fabric and then wash according to paint instructions.