In reference to the kit you saw, if it was Liquetex it may have included
"Marbleze" (spelling?)to help it spread. When I ordered some it seemed to
be acetone based and I wouldn't use it.
PRO Chemical and Dye Co. (800-2-BUY-DYE) send a hand out with their paints
that recommend using rubbing alcohol as a spreading agent for their
acrylics. It has been a while since I did watercolor marbling, but it seems
that I would put a little alcohol in the colors that had a grainy quality to
>From: Jan Walker <jwalker@...>
>Subject: Re: [Marbling] Alcohol in gouache or water colour paints
>Date: Sat, 7 Oct 2000 14:54:12 -0400
> > The local library had a copy of Wendy Addison Medeiros book "Marbling
> >Techniques". For readers who have this at home, page 64----refering to
> >preparing gouache---" Keep adding water until you have something that is
> >about the consistency of cream. Add several drops of rubbing alcohol. You
> >are now ready to add ox gall as a flow agent."
> > My question is--what is the alcohol for? Just to keep the paint kind
> >loosened up---and wouldn't the ox gall be enough?
>I'm afraid I can't answer the question! But I've seen mention of alcohol a
>few times in preparing fiber reactive dyes (not pigments). With dyes, I
>think the alcohol helps promote the dyes entering into solution with the
>water. Perhaps the same thing happens with pigments (as in the watercolor
>paints). Some pigments are notoriously difficult to "wet" and the alcohol
>might help the little clumps of ground pigment disperse a little more
>easily in the water, reducing tendencies to graininess. This would be a
>separate effect from the surfactant role played by the oxgall. But this is
>really speculation on my part, based on reading I've done.
>More on the topic of alcohol -- I was looking in the store the other day at
>something packaged as a marbling base for acrylic paints. (I think it was
>Liquitex or maybe W & N. Can't recall.) It had health hazard labels,
>which seemed to be because it contained rubbing alcohol. I didn't end up
>buying it so can't report on what it does.
>I wish I understood more about which kinds of compounds were in which kinds
>Then I could make sense of seemingly inconsistent advice between one book
>Perhaps people with more technical knowledge could share. How does the
>medium/binder/carrier differ between acylic marbling paints and watercolor
>or gouache marbling paints?
>Is there a difference between acrylic marbling paints and acrylic fabric
>marbling paints? If there is some kind of medium needed to make acrylics
>permanent on fabric, would the same medium make watercolor permanent on
>fabric? Or why not?
>Confused in Massachusetts,
Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com
Share information about yourself, create your own public profile at