A Lesson in Impermanence

TheLastButterflyYesterday I worked the last butterfly on my Cerulean Flight piece and I was so excited that I had to constantly refrain from heat setting the work and moving on to the next stage of development.

This morning though was a different story altogether. I heat set the entire piece of fabric, first from the back of the fabric then from the front. Once it was cooled I put it in the washer with some other non-abrasive items and 30 minutes later I had this…


To say that I was angry is an understatement. I have been painting on fabric for 35 years and I have never, ever, had this happen before. It took a lot of deep breaths before I could get myself under control and thinking clearly. “What the heck went wrong?” Then it occurred to me. I had used a new textile medium.

DeltaTextileMediumUsually I use fabric paints, but occasionally I like to use acrylic paints with a textile medium. It’s more cost effective and acrylics seem to mix better when I am looking for new colors or shades. I have using the acrylic/textile medium technique for about 10 years now with great success. For Cerulean Flight though I had used this Delta Textile Medium. I had never used it before, but I figured “Hey, all textile mediums are the same, right?” Nope, they are not.

It was during my morning meditation that a word came floating through my consciousness: Impermanence. Instantly I had to smile, because I just received a first hand lesson on the transient nature of everything in life. Lesson learned.


So today, I am spending some time shopping on my favorite art supply website, Dick Blick, in hopes of purchasing new fabric paints. I don’t want to take another chance with textile mediums ever again.

Happy Creating!

8 thoughts on “A Lesson in Impermanence

    • I love your optimism Melanie! Unfortunately, it cannot be saved. I’ll trim off the top half of the fabric that just has background on it to keep for a future project, but the butterflies are going to grace the great wood stove god.

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