Using Airfix to set Dye Na Flow, Textile, and Lumieres
  • It's not feasible for me to set my fabric paint by ironing or using a dryer, so I purchased Airfix. I have tried a product called Versatex Fixer (made by another company) but find that it doesn't mix in well with the paints. It just doesn't dissolve. Here's my question about Airfix. It says to "Add a teaspoon to a quart of water-based fabric paint." But I use paints in much smaller quantities because I paint baby clothes. So, for example, I often only mix 2 tablespoons of any given color. Does this mean that I can't use Airfix? It also says you can add "3% by weight." I don't know what that means. Does it mean 3% of 2 tablespoons if I'm using 2 tablespoons of a color? And wouldn't that be an unmeasurably small amount? Help! I really want to try this but need to know how much I would add to something like 2 tablespoons of Dye Na Flow or Lumiere. Thanks so much for any help anyone can give me.
  • Hi,

    Our instructions for airfix can only be given by volume and as you have pointed out it goes a long way. 3% per volume means that you would add 3% of airfix to 100% color. Yes 3% of two tablespoons is not a lot of liquid. You could try diluting the airfix with water and adding it to your color that way. Make up a solution of 1.25ml to 8oz of water and add that to the color. Increase the amount of airfix to the water until you achieve the desired permanency. Do a test first.

    The colors will also fix in a tumble dryer if ironing the garments is not an option.

  • Another way to do it is to go metric. Two tablespoons is the same as 30 milliliters. 3% of 30 ml is 0.9 ml. You could get a syringe from the drug store that holds 1.0 ml, and fill it to the 0.9 ml line. (You won't need the needle that insulin users attach to a syringe, just the syringe itself.)

    Sometimes you see the metric unit referred to as "cc", for "cubic centimeters". One cubic centimeter is the same as one milliliter.

  • Thanks to both of you. The idea of using a syringe is a brilliant. Thanks so much Paula. That's what I'm going to try. I don't "think metric" yet, so I'm just going to take your word on the math!
  • OK, just as a rule of thumb:

    It varies with viscosity, but there are roughly 600 drops to an ounce of liquid (2 TBLS). Start with 15 drops of the fixer (estimated 2.5%), then add a drop or 2 at a time with an eyedropper until you get the fixative effect you want. May take a little experimenting, but once you have the ratio, it's clear sailing.

    I'm afraid if you do it in a water solution, as suggested, you'll dilute the paint too much. I'd add water to the consistency you want, then add the fixative.

    Good luck - L