1.18.2009

Crafty Day

Naia and Leia were over for several hours today, so while Leia took a nap Naia and I worked on a project I heard about at Guild. It sounded so cool that I gathered up the supplies right after Christmas and I've been waiting - impatiently - for Naia to visit.
This is Sharpie tie-dye. (I used the instructions found here and here, but if you Google it, there are a lot of how-to sites.) To do this, you need colored Sharpie pens, white t-shirts, rubber bands, a spray bottle (or straws for dripping) and rubbing alcohol.
Naia and I spent a couple of hours drawing on shirts. We first tried tying tennis, ping pong, and golf balls in the fabric but found we liked having a bigger canvas so we moved up to coffee mugs and plastic food storage containers. We experimented with dripping alcohol onto the colored area but that was too slow - I didn't have drinking straws so we used our fingers; I think straws would have worked much better. We finally put the alcohol in a spray bottle, held our breath and saturated the fabric. We scribbled, wrote messages, and drew pictures. We made little dots and blended layers of color. Some of our shirts turned out really well - I love the watercolor effect above - and some were pretty much a mess. When we were done, we had 5 t-shirts that will fit Naia and Miles, and 5 onsies for Leia. I heat-set the colors by placing the dry shirt (it's important to let all the alcohol evaporate before you do this part) in the clothes dryer for 30 minutes. As you can tell, Naia thought her shirt was da bomb. Leia willingly modeled one of her outfits but you could tell she wasn't really into it. She'd much rather practice her push-ups. On the fun scale, I'd give this project a '10'. It kept Naia - and me - entertained for hours. And Naia will have a reminder of a fun day with Grandma, at least until she outgrows the shirts.