Typically in fabric stenciling, we use paint to add color, but with discharge stenciling, we remove color from the fabric instead, using a chemical process of some type. This can be accomplished with bleach, dishwasher gel, or a discharge paste.
Cedar Canyon Textiles: Discharge with Stencils ~ Playing with Stencils 4 provides some beautiful examples of discharge techniques using both dishwasher gel and discharge paste.
uses a diluted bleach solution and a freezer paper stencil to decorate a tshirt.
The video below demonstrates stenciling with deColourant brand discharge paste.
The deColorant is available online through Dharma Trading Co.. Dharma‘s page provides some excellent tips on using the paste, which is especially helpful since the package instructions are rather sparse.
For my own discharge stenciling project, I decided to purchase the deColourant. I liked the fact that it is low odor, unlike other color discharge products. And it’s thicker than bleach, which makes it easier to stencil with. It looks to me as if the artist in the video got some run unders on her fabric. To avoid this in my own tests, I worked the paste into the brush a little, then stippled, rather than swirled it onto the fabric. Tomorrow I’ll post the results along with a short tutorial on freezer paper stenciling.