View Full Version : Akua Wiping Fabric - alternatives ??
12-01-2015, 01:35 PM
Hi there fellow printmakers. I am making the switchover to Akua intaglio inks and am awaiting an order. One thing I didn't order was some of the "Akua Wiping Fabric" I was wondering whether any of you have this in your studio? Also whether you can make any suggestions regarding possible alternatives. I haven't actually seen this product ;in the flesh' so to speak so...
They don't seem to stock it in stores here in the UK. I have seen it listed as being £25.00 plus a huge amount for postage from the USA which makes it prohibitively expensive.
So THERE MUST BE AN ALTERNATIVE which OK, perhaps might not be as good as the original product.......... but which might be about 70% as good.
By the way as well as being non toxic which is very important to me for my health, I have also found that using Akua intaglio ink, is so radically less labor intensive......again good for my health ( I have chronic pain condition - which saps a lot of energy)
Hope on this occasion someone can help.
bye for now
ps the image above was made using collagraph technique
winking cat press
12-04-2015, 09:35 AM
since my edication in printmaking started with the Street People in SanFran back in the 1960's, I've always been inclined to use found materials.... or materials commonly available locally, rather than using "special" materials. What I've learned is that for any "special printmaking material" there are always many, many equal alternatives.
For wiping plates, blue Scott Shop Towells, available in a big box at Home Depot works just as good as anything else.... as do old t-shirts that you can get at Goodwill in a big bag for a few dollars.
Remember, this is not rocket surgery..... and the requirements for a wiping cloth are not terribly stringent. Use whatever you can get locally and cheaply.
12-04-2015, 11:04 AM
Winking Cat Press
Thank you very much for your input........and yes I use old rags and all sorts for when I am wiping oil based plates...........
However with the water-based Akua intaglio........I have seen them using this special 'wiping fabric' in their videos ........and it does seem to be particularly 'effective'. Being a person with chronic pain, I am seriously interested in all things that lessen the laboriousness of physical exertion........this being as my energy levels are limited.
The only thing I know about it, is it's made from polyester and its lint-free. I am thinking maybe there is some kind of curtain fabric with fine netting that is made of polyester.............??
I WOULD STILL LIKE TO HEAR FROM ANYONE WHO HAS ACTUALLY USED AKUA INTAGLIO AND WHAT THEY ARE USING FOR WIPING THEIR PLATES
AND WHETHER THEY HAVE PURCHASED THIS SO CALLED "AKUA WIPING FABRIC".
PERHAPS THEY MIGHT BE ABLE TO OFFER SOME THOUGHTS ON A SPECIFIC ALTERNATIVE.
Thanks again and best wishes with your printmaking adventures.
(based in United Kingdom)
12-06-2015, 01:02 PM
Hi Aine, I have used dried up baby wipes. I had left them open and they were dry but they were effective to wipe off akua ink.
I took a look at the description of Akua wiping fabric. It is made from non woven, spunbond polyester. There are examples of such fabrics online, although I have not yet tried them but fairly cheap.
12-06-2015, 02:13 PM
I have used the dryer anti-static sheets. After using them a few times in the dryer they are nice and soft. So it's another option for clothes dryer owners.
12-06-2015, 05:17 PM
Regular tarlatan works fine with Akua intaglio inks and is less expensive than Akua 'wiping fabric'.
12-06-2015, 11:11 PM
the drier sheets Diane mentioned and the dry babywipes that Graphicali suggested are both great ideas..I have made a note of those.
I use interfacing material from the local fabric shop. I just purchased several metres the other day as it was 50 % discount and found it actually works very well...much less abrasive than tartalan especially if you are doing intaglio printing with Perspex plates. It is also less cost than the Akua wiping fabric and is similar in physical characteristics.
After wiping away the Akua ink on the plate with the fabric I follow with a light polish across the plate with cut squares of gift wrap tissue. We just used this same method in a grade six classroom where the students created collagraph plates and printed them in black Akua intaglio ink and using my small press.
12-07-2015, 01:29 AM
I wondered about interfacing too as it is often made from polyester. The akua fabric looks to be very lightweight, did you find the thickness to make much difference, other than cost?
12-07-2015, 03:17 PM
Ainess, I have used the AKUA wiping fabric and when I received it I said, dang it, polyester interfacing (not the heat bondable but the non-woven sew in). I don't know for sure but it feels virtually identical in look and feel to a soft to medium weight polyester interfacing fabric that you can get at any fabric store. No guarantees because I haven't tried it and I am just a beginner but it most fabric stores have periodic sales and you could definitely try a few different types for very little money to see if it works.
12-07-2015, 03:21 PM
If you want to send me your address, I will slip a cut from my AKUA wiping fabric, stick it into an envelope and send it to you. That way you can compare if you take it to a fabric store.
12-08-2015, 10:38 AM
I believe the Akua wiping fabric is a spun polyester just like the interface material that Elkanah mentioned. There is the fusable interface (like webbing) that will work but it is a solidified glue which reacts with heat). The material I use is a thin square weave that tears easily by hand. It is very soft to the touch, not at all like tartalan. But it does pick up the akua ink nicely when wiped across the plate surfaces.
By the way Aine I didn't mention that I like the collagraph example you posted at the beginning of the thread. I just finished two collagraph projects in classrooms and at present I am working on some new collagraph plates of my own (after being motivated seeing the results that students achieved).
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