I loved using a stencil and fabric marker to quickly decorate clothing. Love, love loved it. Machine Embroidery is still my favorite. But machine embroidery takes times. I invest lots of time in selecting my design and editing before I even hoop up the fabric and start the machine stitching. In fact I’d say that I spend at least 2 hours just editing and auditioning. Sometimes, I don’t want to invest a lot of time. Sometimes I’m in a hurry. Right now I have several patterns I want to fit. I don’t want to invest a lot of effort into the wearable muslin but I don’t want to make something plain. I can buy plain, very cheaply, at a number of stores. A stencil and fabric marker is a great alternative. The problem I’m finding is that fabric markers have a very limited color range. I see the same 16 colors all the time. The same 16 that I already own. I’ve not had huge success at layering and blending didn’t work at all. The result is the 16 colors I have, are the same 16 colors I use each and every time. As a budding artist, I want more variety in color. I suppose I’m spoiled by how watercolor mixes into millions of hues and my embroidery threads have a range of 300 hues. It just seems boring to use the same 16 fabric markers. So I was in Hobby Lobby the other day and I saw these Sargent Markers:
and there was another package with even more! But they don’t say fabric marker. They don’t say permanent. BUT they also don’t say washable. If you mosey on over to Amazon.com you’ll find that there are numerous marker packages by Sargent that specifically say they are washable. So what does it mean when “washable” is not in evidence? I think it means, you could be fooled. The only way to know for sure is testing. I bought the 8 pack.
Using the same cotton fabric as with yesterdays image transfer test, I wrote 3 titles Control, Gel Coverage, Fabric Medium using the Sargent Art Markers
The Control title, has no other medium application. It will tell me what happens when this sample goes through the laundry. If “Control” is gone, the markers are washable. If “Control” is lighter, it’s not color fast and will slowly disappear (think of those early Rayon threads that were gorgeous when first stitched but faded over time). If “Control” is the same intensity, then the markers are permanent.
I coated “Gel Coverage” with Liquitex Matt Super Heavy Gel; and finally I coated the title “Fabric Medium” with the fabric medium used several weeks ago. I’m pretty sure that the title “Fabric Medium” will look the same after laundering. I’ve had excellent success preserving water-colour pencils with fabric medium. So my confidence is high the markers will work fine when coated with the fabric medium. I’m not sure how the Liquitex is going to react to the laundry. We’ll see because I promise to update this post.