More Fabricadabra: Marbling

When we had our Fabricadabra workshop a while back, I tried marbling fabric with shaving cream. I had gotten a kit with all the supplies from Quilters Treasure.

marbling kit More Fabricadabra: Marbling

It was a fun process, even if it was somewhat messy. I guess if you don’t want a mess, you shouldn’t be trying to create your own fabric! The first step is to spread shaving cream evenly over the work surface. I didn’t stress about getting it perfect.

spreading1 More Fabricadabra: Marbling

The Tsukineko inks are applied next. They come in lots of colors. You can use one color or more. I dropped ink (pink, blue and yellow) onto the shaving cream with a toothpick.

drops More Fabricadabra: Marbling

Now you get to make the designs which will eventually end up on the fabric and look pretty and swirly. You can drag a comb through the shaving cream/paint, or you can use your fingers, a toothpick or whatever you have on hand.

swirling More Fabricadabra: Marbling

Here’s another version using different ink colors:

cream More Fabricadabra: Marbling

It’s getting interesting. Take the fabric you want to marble and lay it carefully right side down on top of the shaving cream/paint–kind of pressing the fabric into the shaving cream. Pick up the fabric, lay it flat with the painted side up and use a squeegee to remove the shaving cream.

squeegee More Fabricadabra: Marbling

The fabric I used was plain white cotton. I wasn’t crazy about the way the white showed, so I decided to add some paint.

paintontop More Fabricadabra: Marbling

This might not have been the best idea, but I figured I didn’t really have anything to lose. Later I decided to use Jacquard paints and paint the whole thing pink, which got rid of the white background I was disliking so much.

finishedfabric More Fabricadabra: Marbling

Here is my finished fabric. The nice thing is that if you don’t like what’s happening, you can paint over it! The kit from Quilters Treasure was helpful—it saved me from running all over town to gather supplies.

I decided to cut up the fabric and do a couple of mock-ups, just to see how it would behave in a block.

Here it is with a deep blue Tonga batik from Timeless Treasures:

batik9 More Fabricadabra: Marbling

And another with Nana’s Garden from Red Rooster Fabrics:

lightyellow9 More Fabricadabra: Marbling

And finally with luscious Ricky Tims’s Rhapsody Colorée III, also from Red Rooster:

dkyellow9 More Fabricadabra: Marbling

I’ll be doing more marbling. It’s easy and fun!

About Diane Harris

I'm an editor for Quiltmaker magazine in Golden, Colorado, USA. For six years, I wrote pattern instructions, product reviews and how-to articles. Then I spent four years as QM's Interactive Editor, working to generate much of our online content. Now I'm back to patterns and how-tos, which is a great fit for me. I still love writing about quilt-related topics for Quilty Pleasures, and I always have my finger on the pulse of the quilting world. I teach a variety of quilt classes and give guild programs, too. Reach me by email:
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One Response to More Fabricadabra: Marbling

  1. ZEE says:

    I have been wanting to try dyeing fabrics with shaveing creme for a few years now but wasn’t sure how permenate the colors would be. How well do they stand up to being washed every now and again? This seems sooooo easy to do.

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