Intro: EasY, Non-MessY TShirt Bleaching With Discharge Paste
Add pictures, patterns and messages to your clothing with discharge paste, a sticky white goo that discharges pigment. You can paint it on, screen it on, stamp it on, or use stencils!! See my other instructables for more.
Step 1: Materials
Discharge paste, findable at arts and craft stores. I forget how much it costs, but its like paint in terms of quantity needed.
Iron that can steam. Alternatively, you can produce steam with microwaves, stoves and ovens. I've never tried these methods, but theoretically they should work, too.
Discharge paste applicator, eg fingers, but more likely a paint brush, available at both arts and craft stores and hardware stores. Maybe even the SuPeR market if you get a meat baste-er.
Natural fiber fabric with pigment (not paint).
Optionally: cardboard to make stencils, or silk screen.
Step 2: Create Stencils or Silkscreen
Look in your recycling for some thin cardboard, eg a spaghetti or cereal or tissue box. Draw the shape you want.
Cut it out. I used a cheap swiss army knife I found lying around, but an exact o knife would also work well.
You can make stencils with multiple pieces. These ones are simple.
Step 3: Apply Disharge Paste
Use a brush to paint on the paste. I like to apply it medium thick (more on the thick side) and work it into the fabric with the brush. You can also water down the paste a little to help it soak into nooks and crannies.
Step 4: Let Paste Dry
THe paste dries in 30 minutes to a few hours. I believe that once it is dry it no longer discharges paste. You might be able to steam off (next step) the paste before it is dry to get less discharging, but that might blur lines since the paste will be wet and move around. Instead, thinning with water might be a better approach. Please post comments or collaborate if you run these experiments.
Step 5: Steam Off Paste
I use an iron on the lowest steam setting, but I bet you could steam off paste by holding it over a boiling pot of water.
This step smells.
The fabric will discolor after a few dozen seconds of ironing. I give it a few minutes to be sure.
If your fabric is non-natural the paste may discolor during this step, but then fade back to the original color.
Step 6: Done.