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.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Playing with plastic

I played with this technique over the weekend; using grocery/store bags, dry cleaner wrapping, thickened plastic wadding and bubble wrap. 

Mostly, I just melted stuff together. :)

I was interested in the types of textures I could get with the different weights of plastic; but because the dry cleaning plastic would have been excessively boring, I first put two squares as a base,  mixed up some craft paint on top, put another two squares of plastic on that and melted away, 

Four layers wasn't enough (paint ALL over my iron), but 8 was, and I got some really nice results that were highly coloured, very pliant, and easy to quilt. 

I also tried it with some white grocery bags for a less vibrantly coloured result and in my finished piece, layered the different kinds of plastics and some of the colours together. 

I also tried putting "stuff' in between the layers: sequins, tiny beads, bits of fabric, plastic mesh and the like - with varied results - I may use those bits and bobs in other pieces in the future:

But often, the result was such a hard mass of plastic, I couldn't imagine using it in any way except possibly, sculpture!

It's not clear from the pic above - but this turned out be a lump of hard plastic that no needle could ever get through!

In the end, I took some pinks and greens and whites, cut them up, layered them and put them together in a little wall hanging. BSP (Beloved Spouse) *LOVES* it and thinks I should work with melted plastic all the time.  

It was fun - but that's enough for me. :)



  1. Kit, You are amazing and completely fearless with your experiemnets. Who lovely this is.

  2. Thanks Beth!

    I always think when I'm trying stuff "what's the worst that can happen?" - I mean short of blowing our house up, really, what IS the worst that can happen? With that in mind, I'm willing to try anything! :)

  3. It was very interesting to see what you did with the different types of plastic. I got some nice "flexible" "fabric" from my grocery store bags. I wonder what caused your plastic to be a "hard mass of plastic."

    I'm impressed to see everyone's finished products.

  4. Beth, I think it was the type of plastic bag. The one's that turned out to be hard masses were very dense plastic bags - proportionally, the difference between a super sheer pair of pantyhose and a pair of cabled wool tights.

    It took longer heating time and more pressure to melt those bags and when they cooled again, they were practically like lego blocks! The grocery bag results were great.

  5. Have you tried stitching then melting? That might be an interesting result. Hilary

  6. Ooooh, that is a great idea Hilary - you should try it and let us know!


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