I’m a big fan of sparkle, no big surprise to those who know me! So I am always looking for ways to include it in the things I create. One of my favorite mixed media techniques is using glitter to add sparkle to projects.
You need an adhesive that bonds glitter to fabric and there are several choices on the market. I like a product that holds the glitter and still allows movement to the fabric. I have used Artist Glitter Fabric Dries Clear Adhesive, from Art Institute Glitter, Inc, Cottonwood, AZ, and absolutely loved it.
As far as the glitter goes, make sure it is a polyester glitter. There are glass glitters on the market, but glass will cut fabric fibers so use them on your non- fabric pieces. Also this is not the glitter that your children use on their art projects. A good polyester glitter will allow you to wash the item and keep the glitter in its desired location.
Attach a piece of freezer paper behind your project for stability, or tape your fabric to a piece of cardboard, this will keep the piece from moving and putting glitter and adhesive where you don’t want it.
For this project I am using the printed motif on the fabric to jazz up my serger cardigan. I love to do this because I am just enhancing what is all ready there.
I recommend using a piece of paper to hold and catch the excess glitter so when you are done with that color, you can pour the excess glitter back into jar.
There are metal tips available so you can pipe or squeeze out a fine line. I used a fine paint brush to fill in the areas I desired to glitter. The glue can be painted on when slightly diluted with water to keep the glue fluid. This is just enough to spread it easily, not to dilute it so it no longer serves as an adhesive.
Spoon the glitter on the adhesive while glue is wet, it should be white and shiny. Turn the project over paper and tap backside with a spoon (or finger) to expel excess glitter before moving onto next color. The adhesive will hold the glitter; you do not have to wait for it to dry before tapping excess off.
Always put adhesive down in small, controlled areas, so glitter can be applied before adhesive begins to dry.
If you make a mistake, you may be able to lift(gently scrape) the area using some quilter’s template plastic (or a stiff thin piece of something that won’t absorb the glue or stick to the fabric) after you have added the glitter to the design.
Depending on thickness of adhesive and climate in your area, it should dry in 10 to 30 minutes. The adhesive recommends a 4-5 hour drying time for durability.
The adhesive also recommends heat setting your project using your oven. Be sure others in your home know what you are doing! Preheat your oven 300 degrees. SHUT OFF OVEN ONCE PREHEATED.
Remove paper, tape and place item, design side up, on a foil-lined cookie sheet.
Place in the oven; be sure the oven is shut off. Leave in 30 minutes to set.
You can then wash the item inside out in cold water before wearing. Line dry or tumble dry low. Do not bleach or dry-clean item.
One of the most stunning effects comes from using a pearlescent glitter on brightly colored fabric. The pearlescent colors compliment the fabric colors beautifully!
Imagine the possibilities, I found the product to be flexible and wonderful to add another dimension to my quilts. I used it on the rose quilt to emphasis the rain drops, and on the butterfly quilt to create sparkly butterflies. So don't be afraid to add some sparkle to your next project!-Linda