I recently experimented with Pentel Fabric Fun dye sticks on a white cotton t-shirt, hoping to add a pop of color to my wardrobe.
I was testing acrylic paint, fabric paint, markers and these Pentel sticks. The results with sticks were so bad I had to write this Pentel Fabric Fun Review immediately.
I chose very cute design – some space inspired doodles.
However, my experience left me thoroughly disappointed.
Key points why I do not recommend Pentel fabric fun:
- poor color adhesion
- these are pastel sticks so they crumble a bit
- colors are easy too wash off even after heat setting
- not very easy and convenient to apply compared to paint or markers
Despite following the instructions diligently, the results were far from satisfactory.
The box is tiny and it comes with 7 colors: black, white, blue, red, orange, yellow, green. All basic colors.
I applied the colors and heat set as the instructions said, at that point all look good.
I was disheartened to find that none of the colors adhered permanently to the fabric after the washing.
The vibrancy that initially caught my eye faded significantly after the first wash, leaving my once-colorful creation looking pale and lifeless.
This outcome was particularly frustrating given the time and effort I invested in the project.
It’s important to note that I used the dye sticks on a white cotton t-shirt, a surface that should theoretically provide a good base for the colors to adhere.
And both paints (acrylic and fabric), as well as markers stayed as bright as they were wet.
I’d also say that application as not as easy as with paint, as sticks don’t cover well cotton.
I guess considering the price you can still get them but only if you won’t be washing nor wearing that fabric.
To be completely fait I’d like to say something positive about these pastel fabric sticks:
- They are very cheap
- Even though they are pastel sticks they are not too waxy or oily
- They are somehow blendable and mixable. So if you layer blue stick over yellow the middle will be close to green color.
How do you use Pentel fabric fun?
Pentel Fabric Fun is a set of fabric dye sticks that can be used to create colorful designs on fabric as long as you are not planning to wash it!
Materials You’ll Need:
- Pentel Fabric Fun dye sticks
- White fabric (cotton or a cotton blend works best)
- Paper towels or scrap fabric
- Pencil and stencil (optional)
- Paper clips to fix the fabric
- Piece of cardboard or white paper
- Prepare Your Fabric:
- Wash and dry your fabric to remove any sizing or residues. Iron it to ensure it’s smooth and free of wrinkles. Place a piece of cardboard or paper underneath the fabric to prevent the color from bleeding through.
- Place the paper or cardboard under the cloth/fabric/T-shirt to prevent stains.
- You can also fix it with paper clips.
- Design Your Pattern (Optional):
- You can draw your design directly onto the fabric using a pencil to sketch or use stencils for more intricate patterns.
- To cover an area well you will have to press pretty hard, but be careful not ot break the stick.
- Blend Colors (Optional):
- If you want to create blended colors, apply different colored dye sticks closely together on the fabric. You can then blend the colors using your fingers or a fabric blending tool.
- Heat Set the Dye:
- Place a paper or wax paper or a cloth over the colored area.
- Set your iron to the appropriate temperature for the fabric type (usually the hottest setting the fabric can tolerate without scorching).
- Iron over the paper towel or scrap fabric, moving the iron constantly for about 2-3 minutes. This heat setting process helps pastel wax to sip into the fabric.
- Wash and Care:
- After heat setting, your fabric is ready to be used. I DO NOT recommend washing the cloth painted with Pentel pastel sticks for fabric.
Remember to test the dye on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric before applying it to your entire project to ensure you’re happy with the results.
Although these Pentel fabric sticks are incredibly cheap I would not buy them again.
It is important for me to have something long lasting and looking good at least for some time, but when the colors fade immediately after a wash it feels like a waste especially when Pentel says on their instructions that colors are fade-resistant and won’t wash out – precisely what they did!
Masha Eretnova is a certified teacher. She started painting and drawing 20+ years ago and now is an international abstract artist and educator passionate about acrylic painting, gouache and crafts.
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