Firstly, what kind of stains are you trying to recreate? Sweat, grease, mud, blood etc. How did these stains occur and where on the garment would they be? Is there any other distress on the garment and how did that happen? Torn sleeves, ripped trousers and so on. Once you have established this then you are more likely to produce a convincing effect rather than a garment that looks like it has been attacked by a crazy person (unless that is what you are going for of course!)
The various techniques we use usually begin with dyeing or bleaching to dull down the original colour of the garment. We needed to do this for Now Is the Hour to show the effects of sun bleaching and exposure to the uniforms. I mixed up a vat of beige fabric dye and added salt and coffee. I saved a spray bottle full of a more concentrated version to spray on later
|Army shirts, vests and naval uniforms get the dye treatment|
|Judith gets busy with some serious tools|
|Amy attacks a shirt with a parmesan grater|
It's amazing how much joy can be had from breaking down something you have just made! Amy had made a beautiful job of the purple evening dress and an equally good job of destroying it! It does feel rather contrary as a maker and designer to begin with, but as you can see, the ladies really got into it!
|The evening dress(es). Broken down and pristene|
To set the stains, Martin trampled them into the garments and then we gave them a quick go in the tumble dryer. And that's it!! Quite a lot more to it than you would imagine but good fun to do.
|Martin trampling a dress into the floor|
You still have a chance to catch the show.
For those that didn't get to see it, I will post some photos next time