tinting embroidery with watercolor paints
It's a week of embroidery tinting! So far, we've explored crayon and colored pencil tinting, and today I bring you what I think is the prettiest of them all: Watercolor Tinting! This is a little different from all the rest, because the paint gives more of a wash to the background, but that's what makes me love it so!
The paints that I'm using are opaque watercolors, but you can use other types. I just wouldn't recommend the washable kid paints, because...well...they're meant to wash out! Also, I'm using cotton fabrics for this. Blends with lots of polyester are probably not going to work so well.
You'll see two ways to do this. The first will fill the whole background with a soft wash, and the second will just fill a specific area. Both are pretty dreamy, if you ask me...
Place your fabric in a hoop and lightly mist the fabric with water.
NOTE: Unless you want to tint your hoop with paint, use a hoop much larger than the area you intend to paint. Mine got a wee bit blue...
Start adding some paint. Keeping it pretty watery is a good place to start.
Add some more intense color by using less water on your brush. Think about what you'll be stitching over this, and consider using the paint to create some depth and shadow.
Give the paint plenty of time to dry. It will dry lighter, and may get some interesting textures in it, as you'll see below. If you want, you can layer on some more paint.
You can iron this to heat set it a bit or toss it in the dryer. For this one, I didn't wash it, but you can. The color will fade some, but not much.
Once you're finished with your painting, trace the pattern using regular pencil. (Mine is from the Solar System Set in my Etsy shop.)
You could trace the pattern before painting if you want to try and keep the paint within certain areas, but be aware that the paint will bleed and spread a lot.
Stitch the design, and enjoy your lovely background!
This second method uses a freezer paper stencil!
Cut out a shape from the center of a piece of freezer paper, then iron it onto your fabric with the shiny plastic side down.
I doodled a cloud to go behind the cloud I wanted to stitch. It doesn't match the same shape, which is what I wanted. If you want to keep the watercolor exactly within the area of your embroidery pattern, cut out the silhouette of your pattern.
With the stencil in place, and the fabric in a hoop, paint inside the stencil. Take the paint all the way to the edge, blending the colors as you like.
After the paint has completely dried, remove the freezer paper and iron the fabric.
Trace your pattern onto the painted fabric using pencil. Mine is from the Doodles and Dreams set of patterns.
Now you can stitch! For this, I used DMC Pearl Cotton Variations. I love how it has the same blended look of the watercolor background!
There you have it! Two new ways to tint your embroidery with watercolor paints! Tomorrow I have one more tinting tutorial...this time with markers...