Tuesday, January 04, 2011

You have got to try these!

I bought a couple bottles of these acrylic inks by Daler Rowney last summer but had not opened them until I got a note from blog reader Stacy Hortner, who mentioned how much she liked them. So I ran out to Blick and bought a few more colors to do a little experimenting.

Working on a piece of cotton sheeting, I randomly painted brush strokes on the fabric and was amazed that the ink did not bleed no matter how much water I added to it. The colors are saturated and vibrant straight out of the bottle.

It would be so easy to create the look of watercolors with these. I love that the brush stroke keeps its definition even when it is diluted with a lot of water. I painted the yellow brush strokes on the flower above and added red at the base. The red bled where the fabric was wet (on the yellow) and did not bleed outside onto the white fabric!

While shading this sphere, I kept adding darker greens making the fabric very wet, when it dried, it had beautiful mottled texture with just the tiniest amount of bleeding on the side where I added the most ink.

I kept adding water to the ink to see how light the color would get before bleeding on the fabric, it didn't! You can still see the brush strokes on the right side, as though it were painted on paper.

Ok, now here's one of the best parts, it doesn't make the fabric stiff! When the inks are painted full strength (and layered up), the fabric is no stiffer than when fabric has been painted with transparent based textile paints, which I have mentioned before leaves your fabric with the best hand of all the different types of textile paint.

Even though this is acrylic, the dry ink color did pick up a little on my pallet when it got wet, so I would recommend heat setting with a hot iron. And if you are someone who washes your work you might want to do a test before using this on something that you might intend to wash.

I love the saturated color and painterly look that can be achieved, with out stiffness. All the color on my newest quilt is painted with the FW inks and white and black textile paint. If you like metallics, the inks also come in pearlescents.


  1. OOOhhh!!! Thanks Judy! these might be exactly what I need for a currenct project that I have been pondering!

  2. I have only 3 words:

    (It just so happens I got one of their inks for xmas, intending to use it on paper -- those fabric results look dreamy!!! Must buy more colors and get to work! Thank you and thanks to Stacy too!)

  3. Thank you SO much for sharing this product! I am ever on the scout for something that I can do my fiber painting with that won't bleed! I will have to try these asap! Thanks Judy!

  4. I am painting a quilt at the moment and have been struggling with bleeding as I want it to be very watercolour-ish.... I will be going to get those tomorrow. Thanks for sharing that.

  5. Judy,
    I love this product! Everything you said about it is accurate. They are extremely versatile.
    I'm looking forward to using them in the sketchbook challenge this year, among other things.


  6. Thanks for the review -- for the small amount of fabric painting I do, these sound like just the ticket!

  7. Ok I ahve got to get my hands ont hese theya re just what I ahve been dreaming of!!!! I wisht aht I could jut=st run out to Bliks- will have to order them tomorrow!!!!

    thanks so much for the great tip and your latest work is drop dead gorgeous!!!!

  8. Oh My! wow and double wow! These look fab. thank you so much for sharing although my wallet isn't quite so grateful and it is now hiding under the couch hoping to escape another online shop at the art supplies people!!!

  9. Ack! I don't need another product to take up room in my studio....but I wanna have these now!

  10. Sweeeet! The colors are gorgeous! Thanks for the tip.

  11. Fabulous color! You're such a *bad* influence, Judy -- how are we supposed to resist after seeing this? Wish I had a local Blicks...

    Question: is the white outlining textile paint? and would that act as a resist if you were to re-ink some areas?

    Happy New Year -- looks like you're off to a great start.

  12. Hi Luanne,

    the white is textile paint that i painted on a colorful painted background. I added more color to the flowers and leaves and then touched up areas with white paint again. The textile paint will not act as a resist, they are both basically acrylic paints so they will paint on top of each other but you will see colors coming through the top layers of paint, which give lovely depth to the color.

    you could try your local art store for these inks and if they don't carry them, Blick has really good prices so it balances out the cost of shipping.

    I wanna see you start painting some of those gorgeous hummingbirds you photograph so well ;)

  13. How cool! Definitely on my shopping list!

  14. cool. I have one bottle of those in my studio that I bought ages ago for something or another. I'll have to try it on fabric. thanks JCP!

  15. I love the look of your flowers. I'm not an artist, but I may have to go out and buy some of the acrylic ink and play around.

  16. I have several bottles but only use them on paper. I guess that's going to change! Thanks for sharing.

  17. Betty Blais5:20 PM

    Are these better than the Liquitex Acrylic inks or the same?

  18. Hi Betty, I haven't tried out the liquitex inks, but its very likely they work the same.

  19. Do you think these would work on Adia cross stitch cloth without bleeding too much? I'm looking to do watercolor on aida cloth. watered down acrylic and setacolor didnt cut it.. they both bled too much when I added water and I had little control :(

    1. Hi Erin,
      in my experience all paints bleed on loosely woven fabrics when they are watered down. I would suggest trying colorless extender, it's basically the paint base without pigment. It will make your colors more translucent without changing the viscosity of the paint. Setacolor calls it lightening medium and Jacquard calls it colorless extender, you can use it with textile paints or you can mix it with acrylic inks and it will give them more transparency without bleeding.


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