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Silk Painting Tip: 3 Ways to Stretch Your Silk Scarf

I  recently updated all of my silk painting kits.  What did I update?  Well, for one thing, some silk painting kits were updated with new paint colors. This meant I had to take new photos of the finished hand-painted scarf and the new supplies included in each kit.  I also re-filmed the online video tutorial where I show you step-by-step how to hand-paint and design your own silk scarf.  Each kit also includes a printed booklet with detailed instructions on how to paint that specific pattern.  

Stretch Your Silk Using Freezer Paper

One of the things I cover in the instruction booklet and in the online video tutorial is how to stretch your silk scarf using freezer paper.  Before painting on silk , it must be gently stretched to create enough tension so that it remains flat while painting.  In this post, I want to share alternative methods to stretch your silk scarf, in case you can’t find freezer paper.

Stretch your silk scarf on freezer paper

Stretch Your Silk Using a Wooden Frame

Traditional silk painting involves stretching silk on a wooden frame.  The wooden frame is cut to size to be slightly larger than the length and width of the silk piece and secured with clips, metal push pins and rubber bands.  In order to get a wooden frame that is slightly larger than your silk, would require you to custom build a frame in the desired measurements. You’ll then be able to stretch the entire silk piece and paint the full length.

Instead, I use a Silk Stretcher Frame that I purchased from Blick Art Materials.  This wooden frame is adjustable and you can stretch sections of the scarf, paint it, let it dry, then unclip and move the scarf down to paint the next section.  

When using a wooden frame similar to this, place metal push pins along the wood frame. Then, stretch the scarf across the frame so that there is enough tension and hold it in place with wire clips, metal push pins and rubber bands.  

How to stretch a silk scarf with a wooden frame


Stretch Your Silk Using an Aluminum Tray

The final option that you can use to stretch your silk scarf is to use an aluminum tray that is slightly larger or just about the same size as the width of the silk.  In this case, you will have to stretch the scarf, apply the outliner or paint a section, let it dry and then unclip the silk and move it down so that you can paint the next section.  

When I’m painting a 14” x 72” silk scarf, I use an aluminum tray that is approximately 13” width and 20” length.  

Start by stretching the silk scarf across and use the clips to hold the scarf in place. As you start to paint the outer edges of the scarf, you will have to unclip the scarf and adjust it so that you can paint the edges.

How to stretch a silk scarf using an aluminum tray

You can use binder clips or I like to use colorful wire utility clips.

Interested in designing your own hand-painted silk scarf?  You can! Check out my collection of silk painting kits.

Design your own hand-painted silk scarf

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