In the above photos I am cutting/tearing the silk to the size I need it to be for the paintings I am working on. Then I coat the silk with an antidiffusant that will help me get more of a watercolor effect when I paint the dyes on the silk. It will also give me more control over the spread of the dyes. After the silk is coated it is hung on a line in my studio to dry.
In the photos above I am pinning the silk to the wall so I can transfer my sketch onto the silk with a Conte' pencil. I usually use a water soluble quilters pencil but have been having a lot of problems with them so Don Baker suggested using soft vine charcoal or Conte' pencil. The vine charcoal did not work because of the small details in these paintings but the Conte' worked great. I have to say it was a heck of a lot easier tracing the drawing with the Conte' instead of the quilters pencil! It was so smooth and required nowhere near as much pressure as the quilters pencil does. I just pray it washes out because there is some wax in the Conte' pencils and that was one of the problems I was having with the quilters pencils, the wax in them was not allowing them to wash out totally.
The photos below show the silk with the sketches already traced onto the silk hanging on the line for safe keeping until I am ready to apply the resist.