Saturday, June 20, 2009


These are formulas used in various surface design processes I have talked about to this point. I will be adding others.


4 1/2 oz plain flour
1/4 pint water

Place flour in a mixing bowl and gradually add the water, stirring to make a smooth paste. Add the water in small amount at a time. Sir until smooth and spreadable. After using this paste a few times you may wish to adjust the amount of water to suit your needs.


1 quart water
1 tsp Metaphos
1/4 cup urea

Mix these items together using warm water. This mixture can be stored longterm.

! quart urea water
2-4 tablespoons sodium alginate

Mix sodim alginate into water and mix. You can use a mixer, blender or a wire whisk.

Allow to sit for at least 1 hour and remix to make smooth. If possible, allowing to sit overnight is a great way to mix easily. The more sodium alginate you use the thicker the paste. If the paste is too thick you can thin with more urea.

I keep mine on the shelf. Some people keep in fridge. If you do keep in fridge, you should allow mixture to come to room temp. before using.

If mixture smells of ammonia then it has spoiled.


1 cup water
2-3 tablespoons monogum powder

Mix the two together and allow to sit for 30 minutes. This is the carrier for the bleach to do bleach discharge.

Add 2-3 TBSPS of bleach to 1 cup Monogum paste.

Apply this paste to discharge dye. WEAR A MASK OR WORK OUTSIDE!!!

This acts quickly so you just have to judge by eye as to when you have what you want. Rinse well and soak fabric in Anti-Chlor for 10 minutes.


2 gallons water

2 1/2 teaspoons anti-chlor powder

Mix and store.


This mixture can be put in dye paste to activate when the fabric you are using has not been soda soaked.

4 tablespoons of baking soda

1 tablespoon of soda ash

Mix these together and store in a closed container. It remains good for about 6 months.

To Use Mixed Alkali:

When making activated thickened dye, mix 1/2 teaspoon of Mixed Alkali with 1/2 cup of the dye mixture(dye in print paste). This mixture can then be painted, printed or screened etc. onto untreated fabric and cured.


There are many directions for how much dye solution (dye dissolved in urea water) or dye powder to use for various depths of color. I prefer to say that you should keep your own notes on this but here is a starting point as there are so many variable.

Light Value Thickened Dye: 1 teaspoon dye powder + 1/2 cup print paste

Medium Value Thickened Dye: 2 teaspoons dye powder + 1/2 cup print paste

Dark Value Thickened Dye: 3 teaspoons dye powder + 1/2 print paste


  1. Great post, Terry. You should have someone photograph you in action next time you are mixing!

  2. Thank you, that's a great idea. I realized that I should have an image but couldn't find one I liked. I'm going to refer to this posts in subsequent articles so I will definitely add one.

  3. Terry, so glad you linked to this post... I've bookmarked it, excellent info contained here!

  4. I like to work with flour paste, too - but on the screen. I just had a mess on the fabric. Bleh.