Thursday, May 5, 2011

Can't resist working with soy wax

Have you ever worked with soy wax?  I've used it a lot on fabric, especially silk and I always love the results I get.  When I saw what this months theme was going to be I decided to try using it on paper and I think I have a new favorite surface to use it on.

I worked with 140 cold press watercolor paper.  This one I stamped with an old cookie cutter:

and for this one I used a tjanting to apply the wax:

Once the wax was cooled on these first two I painted over it using my watercolors.  These next two were done using a plastic stencil:

I applied the wax through the stencil using a foam brush and a light pouncing motion.  I transferred some liquid watercolors to a spray bottle and sprayed the color on over the wax.

When the paint was dry I sandwiched the papers between a piece of unprinted newsprint and then ironed with a hot iron to dissolve the wax.  To remove the wax from the stencils that I used I scraped the cooled wax off with an old plastic card and then ironed the stencil between two pieces of newsprint with a warm iron.

I wrote a tutorial on getting started with soy wax batik which you'll find here.  It's written for using it on fabric but as you can see from my results above, it works great on paper too.

                                        Posted by Sue B                 


  1. I love this technique on paper, especially on thin paper because it turns translucent, almost. Fun, Sue!

  2. I didn't know you could use soy wax on paper - I like the effect. How is it different than other resists when you use it on paper?

  3. Hi Chris - well it's a lot cheaper than most other resist methods. It's very quick to dry (or cool and harden) which gets you to the painting part quicker and there's no nasty fumes or chemicals to deal with. Give it a try!

  4. What a great idea! Now I've got to find some soy wax!

  5. It looks like a good resist technique.

  6. Wow, Sue! This looks great. THANKS for the free tutorial. On paper I imagine that you don't remove the wax, right? Can't wait to try this. Maybe I'll try beeswax instead, since that's what I have.

  7. I love the effect it has given. Should be a fun project to try sometime. Thanks.

  8. Hi Jane - you will definitely want to remove the wax. You could probably scrap most of it off with an old credit card but I Just place the paper that has the wax on it between two pieces of newsprint (I used unprinted newsprint) and press with a warm iron. The newsprint will absorb the wax. (tip: save the newsprint and paint over it - where it has absorbed the wax it will also resist the wax and creates a subtle interesting effect).

  9. I so want to try soy wax. I need to come and visit you :)


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