We all love to hear success stories, so the duds tend to get shoved to the back of the closet and forgotten, metaphorically speaking. However, I want to tell you about a failure in hopes someone out there has tried this technique and succeeded.
The technique involves cloth, fabric paint, and rubbing alcohol; and is supposed to produce cool effects of spreading circles. At least that’s what happened in Betty Busby’s video.
I gathered the simple supplies – fabric paint, rubbing alcohol, Q-tips, and scraps of silk. You put a dot of paint on the fabric and touch the center with an alcohol dipped Q-tip. The paint is supposed to spread out from that center like ripples from a stone dropped in water. Here’s my first result. Not quite like Betty’s. This is after spraying the whole thing with alcohol. It bears a distinct resemblance to a paintball target.
I thought I should investigate more videos and found some where 91% rubbing alcohol was touted as the secret ingredient. Usual rubbing alcohol is 70%. All right! I thought, and purchased the stronger stuff.
More failure. The results were even worse with no spreading of the paint, possibly because I used cotton, not silk fabric.
Back to YouTube. I got sidetracked by videos of rubbing alcohol used on drawings done with Sharpie markers. I had that cup of alcohol and a bunch of Q-tips already laid out, so why not try it.
Then, I decided to see if I could get a blurry line around shapes on an old printing experiment. I outlined the leaves with a brown marker and then went over the lines with a Q-tip dipped in alcohol.
So, Betty may be holding back the real secret ingredient, or I may simply not have used the right fabric, or the paint was too thick/thin, or …