A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Mystery revealed

This is how I created the mystery fabric of last Friday. I placed a soda soaked piece of fabric on a plexiglass sheet which was standing in a container. The wet fabric created lots of wrinkles.

Using a small syringe I drizzled small quantities of dye mixture from the top. Because of the wrinkles the dye followed erratic paths.

After it was washed and dried it looked like this. I love this technique which I call drizzle dye to make fabric for skies.

With this piece of fabric I stopped after the blue, the fabric I showed on Friday I continued with different colors. Normally a syringe is used to apply 60 or 120 or bigger quantities of dye mixture to fabric, but using a small syringe gives you lots of play opportunities. 
There were a lot of people who guessed correctly. I picked Pam as the winner for this week. Pam, please email me your address to: wil@wilopiooguta.com.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Mystery technique

So glad that my internet connection is working again, it is still a bit iffy but at least I am connected to the world again :-). Here is my mystery technique for this week:

I don't think it is very difficult this time. Tell me in a comment which technique you think it is. Don't forget your comment might be the one which wins our new e-book. Coming Monday I will tell you how I made this fabric.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Week 4

Several years ago I was taking an online art journal class/challenge for a whole month. In that session we learned many techniques to make different looks on paper.

One of the techniques we learned was to create a look of peeling paint. I LOVED the results. And true to our studio motto...."What if we did this on fabric????"

To be quite honest I wasn't expecting much but since I had done some soy wax techniques I had hopes that it would turn out like I saw it in my head.

So here it is....

Peeling Paint Technique

I started with a piece of hand-dyed red fabric (I'm partial to delapidated peeling red barns). On this piece of fabric I used a VERY old house paint brush (I even cut some bits out of it to make it even more irregular) and applied regular everyday valesine in light brush strokes.

The next step is to paint over the whole piece of fabric with another color. Paint right over the vaseline and everything.  I diluted acrylic paint just a bit for this process.

Now on other mediums like paper and wood, etc, you just wipe off the paint with I think a baby wipe if I remember correctly.  Obviously that would not work for fabric. But since I was used to soy wax removal, I was hoping it would accomplish the task of taking off the vaseline resist.
I used packing paper which leaves no print or anything behind. I placed a piece of paper on BOTH sides of the fabric and ironed it. I repeated this process with new paper until the vaseline had been
absorbed into the paper and out of the fabric.

Here is the ironing mid-process.

And here is the completed process with all the vaseline removed. (NOTE: After all is said and done, if there is just a small amount of vaseline residue, you CAN wash it to completely remove it all)

I LOVED how it turned out! Looks just like the side of a very old red barn to me!!

I have another project I want to use this technique on that came to mind. If I get it done before the end of February, I'll post the results!

That's it for me today!
I'll see you next week!!

Kelly L Hendrickson

Monday, January 23, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Week 4

As many of you know, Wil Opio Oguta and I get together once every year to experiment in the studio. On one of the trips we attended a local art exposition in the Minneapolis Arts District. At that time we saw a beautiful artistic effect done on paper/canvas. Further inquiry revealed that the technique used was gunpowder. Of course, our first reaction the minute we left the showroom was “What if we used gunpowder on fabric?”  After much research and experimentation, and tons of fun, we decided to write a book to share this textile surface technique. That book is now completed and ready to present to the world!

We could think of no better place to reveal this technique that on the FIRE blog! Knowing this is not a “commercial” blog, we asked permission to present the technique, give away our e-book as a prize and after that to just let you know our website to find out how to acquire your copy. At the moment the website is not operational, but you can contact us, if you are interested in the book. It will be mentioned only in the posts this week when we reveal the technique and at the end when we give away the e-book as a prize. We want to thank the FIRE group for granting us this limited opportunity and in return give our assurance that after February, any discussion and contact regarding our book will be handled on our website.

Now to show you the culmination of our adventure in what else….setting something on fire!

Safety might be the first thought that come to your mind. Actually, we as adventurous textile artists work with chemicals and techniques all the time that require at least a common sense adherence to rules to keep us safe and unharmed. This technique is no different and no more dangerous than any of these other concepts that we have learned to embrace and enjoy.  Follow the safety rules and you should have no problem.  We haven’t burned anything down yet!  Although the word is gunpowder, there is no BANG or anything….just one second of WHOOSH and it is all over. Believe me, the results are worth it!

Supplies are simple except for the gunpowder. However, we found it available at most large sporting goods stores and many gun shops. Admittedly….we did get a few strange looks when we started asking for it.  They weren’t quite sure what to make of us. They asked us what we wanted it for and when we told them we are artists the response was always “Oh!”  Like that explains everything!  LOL!!

The rest of the supplies are probably something you have around your house already.
Yes it is an outdoor procedure, but I happen to know from experience (even up here in the frozen tundra) that it can be done outside even in the winter!  You just do it really quickly!

After setting it on fire, the next part is to turn your amazing surface designed fabrics into wonderful works of art! You have already seen one of mine perhaps.  It is entitled Beautiful Boundary and was inspired by the Great Barrier Reef. The Reef under the water was created by gunpowder on previously sunprinted dupioni silk.

We have the book ready if you are interested. Please contact either Wil or myself and we will give you the particulars.  We are in process of setting up the website but it is not quite ready for publication as yet.

In the meantime, everyone posting a guess on the Friday Mystery techniques will be entered in a drawing at the end of February for a free download of the e-book!
We hope you are intrigued and excited about giving this technique a try.

Since no one guessed the technique, and I loved all the ideas, I just put all the names in a hat and picked one!  And the winner is........


Please send me your mailing information and I will mail out the overlapping leaves to you!
Send the information to    Kelly@KellyLHendrickson.com

Thanks you guys for playing! And I hope this technique intrigued you!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Mystery Technique 3

Ahhhhhh it is Friday again already!!

And our mystery technique for this Friday is below.

Post your guess in the comments below this post and the winner will be drawn from the correct answers....or if no correct answers...then the most creative guess will win!  Subjective I know but

So are you ready to give this one a whirl???

Here it is....

I anxiously await your creative guesses!!  The winner will be announced on Monday along with the technique explanation.  See you then!!

Have an amazing weekend!

Kelly L Hendrickson

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Lino print

This is lino print of cone flowers which I did on green fabric. Don't ask me why the picture shows up in blue :-). I am not going into the details of how to do lino prints, there are excellent online courses on this subject. This print is 12"x12" and I intend to complete it with hand embroidery

Hopefully I can show you more result of this fabric later in February.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Mystery revealed

And this is how I create the mystery fabric of last Friday. I started with a wet white fabric and crunched this.

If you want to you can iron it with all the creases, but that is not compulsary.

Place a screen on it.

And apply paint with a squeegee.

Remove the screen and let the paint dry.

When you unfold the fabric, it looks like this:

I repeated this process several times with different colors of paint. Just like Kelly I do not like white backgrounds, so the final step was a ice dye with different colors of procion dye.

And the winner of this fabric is: Silkworks922. Please send an email with your contactinfo to: wil@wilopiooguta.com. I am moving house this week and will be without internet access for maybe a week. Don't think I am ignoring your comments or questions, I will answer when I am back on line.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Mystery technique

Today is Friday and that means time for a new mystery technique. Here is the fabric:

It is up to you all to take a guess at what techniques (2) I used to create this fabric. Leave your answer in the comments below. Coming Monday I will reveal how it was made and who is the lucky winner of this fabric

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Week 2

Today I have two other credit card marks to show you.

The base piece is a snow-dyed piece I did a couple of years ago. This is all that is left of that particular piece of fabric.  As you can see, it already has a directional look to it.

I wanted a subtle look to the surface design so I chose colors that are already in the piece. A blue, green and yellow.

Before I show you the finished piece, I thought it would be interesting to see what the pallete looks like after this process.

For this look, I tooke the long edge of the card and cut it through all three colors to mingle them. Put the edge of the card on the fabric, draw it straight down and then sweep it out to one side.  Then I took the corner of a card, dabbed just the flat of the corner in the paints (all three colors again) and made a mark at the end of the straight line.

Here is the completed surface design.

As I was working in the photo editing bit for this, I noticed that each direction I turned this piece gave it a different look (at least to me).  I named each of them (yes....I know....it is a sickness I think... seemingly with no known cure)

Clockwise from the top left:  Dandelion Drift, In Flight, Ascent and Trumpet Fanfare.

Someday I know this piece will find its way, at just the right moment, into a work either as a whole background or as a bit of accent.

I have used cards before and have a couple of pieces that might also inspire you. One is white plaster on fabric (r). This one is quilted (which I did before applying the plaster). It is a 12" X 12" art quilt. The other is printing ink on watercolor paper (l).  On both I made the white dots with white paint on the end of an artist paint brush.  In the left one, I also used a black Pigma Pen to make black dots. The art quilt is titled "Directions". The paper piece is titled:  "Decisions, Decisions"

I hope you enjoyed playing with credit cards (and other varieties of cards) this week! There are other marks you can make I'm sure.  Grab fabric, paint, cards and let the creativity begin!!!

And be sure to be here on Friday for the second Mystery Technique Contest!  Wil has the floor for this one. You won't want to miss it!!

Kelly L Hendrickson

Monday, January 9, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Week 2

Yep....the holidays are over.....

The first credit card bill has yet to arrive BUT....you KNOW what you did!!!

Suddenly all those people advising you to cut up your credit cards seem to be wise beyond their

BUT WAIT!!!! DON'T cut them up!!!

I have a MUCH better idea!

Let's "paint" fabric with them!!  (The added value is that you can't use them in a credit machine again!!!)

Here is the list of supplies....very simple

Credit, Gift, Dinner Club (etc.) cards

That's it and you're ready.  Take a deep breath and let the panic of debt fall away for just a minute.

For this technique it is a good idea to tape your fabric down so that it is very stable.
I am using a piece of white PFD for this first part so you can better see the different elements.

Next the paint. I just used some very basic acrylic paints but glittery and marbly ones would be way cool as well.

Then get out your cards of whatever type you have around. You know those fake ones they send you in the mail???? Those work as well!

Now the fun begins. Just take the side of your card and draw it through the paint like a knife through butter. Then make your mark!  I started using the card like a paint brush, making swirls switching from one side of the card to the other is an "S" move. Also made some that were more closed circles.

Noticed as I was doing these that the wave of the cardboard was showing through. No problem for me! I liked it actually but just a note to be aware of the surface to which you tape your fabric...depending on the look you are wanting to create.

Next I took the cards, cut them through the paint and used the card like a "stamp". I chose to keep going with the swirl look and make "rays" with the red paint.

Then I took the corner of the card, dipped in the paint and made dots with it.

Finally, I tooke the side of the card again and cut through the paint. I Swept the card in one direction to make a kind of feathered look.

The final piece, which acquired the name "In A Spin" is ready!

On Wednesday, I'll be using the card on an already snow-dyed piece so you can see what it is like to combine the techniques.

NOW.....(drum roll)....the winner of the Mystery Technique 1!!!

Just a quick note:  It was appropriately mentioned that awarding the first correct answer in a group so wide spread as this did not afford everyone an equal chance.  Correct. So, wanting to be fair to all, the winner will now be chosen from all the correct answers.

The prize is the piece of frabic in the mystery!!

The technique is pounded fabric!!  If you are interested in this technique, I did a mini presentation on the FIRE blog April 28-30, 2014.  All the instructions are in those three days.  Happy Pounding!
For this piece I did use some Lumiere paint I had left over from a project which is why there is the metallic bit in the fabric.

Now for the winner!!!


Pam if you can send me your mailing information (kelly@KellyLHendrickson.com) I will get the piece of pounded fabric out to you right away.

That's it for today all of you! See you on Wednesday for some more credit card fun!

Kelly L Hendrickson

Friday, January 6, 2017

Variety of Techniques - Mystery Technique 1


Here we go!

Each Friday we will be posting a photo of a particular technique.  Your adventure is to guess
what technique we used to create these pieces. Enter your guess in the comment section below the photo.

The first correct entry will be the winner!!
The weekly winner and the reveal of the technique will be the following Monday

Every guess will be entered in the final drawing at the end of February.  The prize you ask????
I'll share more about that next week because it has to do with a particular technique we will be
presenting at that time.


So I'll see you Monday with the reveal of the technique and announcement of this week's winner!!

Kelly Hendrickson

Wednesday, January 4, 2017


And I wish you all a very good new year. Hope it will bring you lots of health, happiness and creativity. As Kelly wrote on Monday we often work together, sometimes on old techniques and sometimes on really new interesting ones. We will tell you more about the new ones later on this month. I think it is the first time in the history of Fire that we have a collaboration of 2 artists for the same period.
Let us start with a simple, but interesting way of using all kind of scraps. For these samples I used lace, yarn, fabric strips - twisted and knotted - felt, zapped tyvek and cotton embroidery yarn.  You get the most interesting effect if the material you use has lots of different texture. Just stitched everything on top of a stiff interfacing.

Color does not matter as everything will be painted anyway. For these samples I used Golden Fluid acrylic paint and this is how some of them turned out:

In this case they are still in their rectangular shape, but who is stopping you to cut them in a different shape. I used some of them as fabric postcards, but they can be used as applique shapes as well. Have fun!


Monday, January 2, 2017

Variety of Techniques Combined - some old and some new! - Week 1


A new year begins...a year of discovery...a year of experimentation...a year of FIRE!!!!!

Since so many of you might still be partying or resting up from the holidays, I will make the first post just an introduction to the months of January and February.

This summer, when Wil was visiting, we thought up a plan to do this "tag-team" approach. The reason is that we have been working together on something very exciting and new which we will be
telling you about in a few days! We requested this format and had it approved to introduce this new
thing to our most adventurous and daring friends at FIRE!  Where else after all??? More about that later.

We were thinking that so many of the techniques on FIRE are so much fun and so exciting...how much fun would it be to combine them and so a series on surface design using more than one technique! Some have done bits of this as examples on their presentations. This will just be a whole two months of combining techniques and see where they take us!

So we will be spending these two months switching off weeks. Wil is going to be doing the first installment Wednesday, January 4. I will be posting a Mystery Technique on Friday, January 6. After that, we will be doing techniques on Monday and Wednesday. Then on Friday there will be a Mystery Technique. This will be a contest where the idea is to guess what the technique is...or what tools were used. The answer will be revealed on the following Monday. And there WILL be a prize!

So until Wednesday....take some time to breathe, shake off the cobwebs of the old year and break through to new beginnings and transitions. I can hardly wait to begin this adventure with all of you!

Kelly Hendrickson