Monday, October 20, 2008

more rust

Another long weekend, what bliss! I stitched a Hallowe'en ornament from my first rust attempts. I basted around the pumpkin magnet I'd used and then quilted it with an outline stitch over some old prequilted calico I had. Then I folded the edges under and slip stitched it to a piece of black felt with a scalloped edge. I added a knot of orange floss in each scallop and a buttonholed hang tie. The flash made this a little brighter than the actual piece.

I also stitched a pulled thread ornament and did some other fun things I'll write about later on. Right now I'm all about the rust.

Saturday night I sat out in the grass in back of the garage, with gloves and a mask, and unrolled the rusty fabric. Here are some final pictures of the fabric before I unrolled it. The bottom of the container sure was sludgy.

I slowly unrolled the wire, wrapping it around a bottle to keep it for next time. Then as the sludge drained into coffee filters (to clear the water and also save that lovely rust for future use), I unrolled the fabric and picked off bits of rusty steel wool. Those went into a container to save, too. I rinsed out the box and then placed my semi-cleaned fabric in it and added clear water and rinsed it around.

It's a good thing coffee filters are cheap--the rust really clogs them up and I used quite a few filtering the container water and then the rinse water. I'm using quart-sized yogurt containers for filtering, rinsing and storage and I began layering a clean, dry filter with a rust clogged one as I went along. Later on I laid them out on a box top to dry.

I swished my fabric around in the rinse water and picked off more pieces of steel wool. I had wrapped two pieces of fabric on my tubing so I had multiple layers of copper wire and steel wool. After the first rinse I filtered the water and then rinsed the fabric again.

I took the whole mess inside then, to the utility tub, and thoroughly rinsed out the box, the water container, strainer and the fabric. Then I hung the fabric to dry. Taa-daa! These pictures are the first fabric, front and back. The fronts are a little different from the backs.

Here's the second fabric piece,
front and back.

I may try another batch and let it rust in the basement. Doing it outdoors is definitely a summer thing. I like that it took about a week to rust because that fits my schedule--set it up one week, rinse the next. It would go quicker in the heat of the summer.

I'm certainly noticing rust everywhere. We did some antiquing on Friday and I noticed I was hunting the shop for rusty objects--something I definitely would have bypassed in the past! Didn't see any this time.


Anonymous said...

cool pumpkin. maybe you could strain through cheesecloth and then you could use the rusty cheesecloth too..

Jane said...

Hi, can't wait to see your results in person. Do you have projects planned for it?

Lois Jarvis said...

It was great for me to see the results you got by using the kit you bought from me. Those kits go out all over the world and I never get to see what people make with them.