Friday, May 6, 2011


I have a problem. It's a smelly one at that.

After taking Dorothy Caldwell's workshop, A Book of Marks, at Peters Valley Craft Center in 2006, I spent a good portion of that summer outside discharging black cotton with bleach. I've dabbled with this on and off since then, mostly using a bleach pen.

Because I couldn't figure out what to do with the discharged fabric, it has been in a plastic bin in my studio closet. Before going into storage, the cotton was washed and dried (via washing machine and dryer). At that time, I thought all was well.

Fast forward to Wednesday when the muse finally struck. The bin came out of the closet. The lid was removed. I breathed in and sort of choked on the fumes. A thought that is not suitable for public consumption ran through my mind. The gist was that this fabric just cannot be used for art unless the smell can be removed. 

To make this story shorter, I washed and dried the cotton twice yesterday all to no avail. Today, I tried soaking it in a mixture of vinegar and water for...hmmm...about 4 hours. Rinsed it and it still smells.

Help! Please! Is there something to be done? I'm off to the grocery to buy more vinegar to try a straight vinegar bath, but am open to other suggestions. 

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