Ikat Watercolor

Have you noticed Ikat patterns popping up in interior decor and fashion this year? I certainly have (check out I love to see trends like this, with deep roots in history (Ikat is one of the oldest forms of textile decoration), finding popularity again today.  

Each time I've seen Ikat over the last few months I've been tempted to try painting an Ikat pattern using watercolors. Today I gave it a go!  Have you heard of Yupo paper?  It’s really fun and interesting to use (check back because I plan to write a blog about it).  Using the Yupo paper it’s possible to “lift” and rework dried paint to achieve some crazy lines and designs - perfect for an Ikat pattern. Here's what I did to create my Ikat watercolor art...

First, do not use a pencil to make preliminary design lines as it’s not possible to erase them. Instead use a small brush loaded with a color that you want to use in your design.


Next start laying in some basic colors...

Play with the outlines with water on the brush and add the darkest color last…pretty cool!

Here’s a second one with variations…

A simple beginning… choose colors you like.

Keep playing with additional colors and thickness of lines…

Remember to consider various  cropping sizes… I like these better than the initial 
size painting.  

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THE YUPO paper’s  smooth, waterproof attributes make it a unique and popular medium among artists and watercolorists because it is so versatile. You will enjoy the paper’s feel and how it holds color beautifully. 

Try painting an ikat design. You may even want to print it on fabric and make your 
very own throw pillow using your creation! will print several types of fabric for you!

Can’t sew? Check out
for a great “no sew” tutorial on making an envelope pillow!

Have fun with this watercolor DIY!