sodium alginate as a water-based resist
by jeanne morrison
in recent posts (the prior two i think) i experimented to find a cheap water-based resist for silk painting. you can get little tubes or bottles of proprietary resist from the dye houses, but they’re way fucking expensive, and i’ll be damned if i’m going to be held hostage to somebody’s formula. grrr.
so i thought about it, and looked it up, and found recipes for rice starch paste and other things that i didn’t like the look of. and i cast my eye on my little unused bag of sodium alginate. i had it because all the books said to have it. to thicken the dye. but in silk painting you want watery dyes. thick dyes are for like painting dye directly on cotton fabrics. for silk you use a resist line.
of course, this is mere tradition. you can use what you like on what you like. that’s art. the question is rather of the integrity of your materials. how long will your work last is more important than what brand of paint you used. read more…