Style 2016 in Palo Alto/ Mountain View

Style 2016 in Palo Alto/ Mountain View

This year’s Style show went smoothly in spite of the rain. And we were happy about that. Attendance was high, I loved my neighbors. On one side was Slice lab, a couple of guys using a 3-d printer to create jewelry. Fun pieces, some necklaces looking like they were made of tiny bleached bones. And very reasonable prices. I bought one that is ivory colored looking like many rubber bands strung together. Can I just say it’s hard not to buy something from your neighbor?!

On the other side was Old House—Sandra Althouse, making ponchos and dresses from old cashmere sweaters and remnants of knits or velvet. She went on a Paris tour with Marcy Tilton and so we had to send Marcy a picture of us together. I ended up with a graphic black and white dress of unknown fiber content and a wonderful poncho gradating from dark blues to light robins egg blues. She got a terra-cotta scarf! A shout out to her son, Xander, who helped me schlepp my fabulous and very heavy mirror. I couldn’t have done it without him!

The clothes I worked so hard to make were appreciated and purchased by happy women. I am gratified when I have been at my creative edge to have the confirmation that the work is good, will be worn and give pleasure to the wearer and the observer.

And I will say again how wonderful it is to be among my peers, to be energized by what they are making and they by what I am doing. I need, and I think all of us who work in isolation, need a fertile ground to exchange ideas and gossip and love each other up. And eat fine Korean food!! We do need the audience and hopefully we will continue to have one. Thanks to Diane Master for providing the venue!

Playing with the Finger Paints!

Playing with the Finger Paints!

I paint my fabrics flat on thin sheets of formica. I had a special table made that can hold 6 of these sheets to create more storage and let the fabric cure more slowly. When I clean these sheets sometimes there is a denser layer of paint when the fabric I have painted is thin- like organza. Such was the case on this day when I started playing with the goopy dye.

I wiped down the entire table with a scratchy sponge then scraped with a squeegee, and finally wiped clean with a sponge cloth. During the squeegee phase shapes began to appear, creating an oasis or alien planet. I also played around with writing my name thinking how cool it would be to have my signature on a watery base. Are you listening o’ great designer of mine?!

Just having fun on a regular work day!

Mood Fabrics!

Mood Fabrics!

The Haute Couture Societé invited me to show and teach at the end of September. I drove the back way through the Delta region. Stockton was an important part of the shipping industry back in the old days. There is a revival happening around the port.

The Hauties, as they call themselves, were warm and welcoming. Liz Kusama had arranged the Saturday class and lecture, filling the hall with stitchers and fabric artists. I love these tight knit groups that commit to showing their work each month and supporting one another. And I have learned that a two day workshop is best, for really covering the information and letting the attendees have a chance to absorb it.

Sunday, we planted ourselves at the local yacht club, with nice light and a faucet outdoors. There was room to spread out. Of course, there was the Solvy portion of the class. Maybe people have done Solvy before, but I find it brings immediate satisfaction and results to be observed and discussed. Using my scraps brings new inspiration to the process, mixing it up for some different effects. We also did a lot of bucket dyeing and printed up a storm.

What I love is showing up to a hall with my bags of scraps and screens and not knowing what will happen. And by then end of the weekend there has been some good exchanges and maybe changes due to the process of seeing with new eyes. There is bonding and creativity triggered and flowing. I take great satisfaction from these interactions and also new ideas from my”students”.

The Ampersand Vessel Challenge

The Ampersand Vessel Challenge

My art group called  Ampersand or Amps meets every two weeks. At a recent meeting my friend Juline Beier presented her solvy pieces- cylinders made of solvy and stitched newspaper dipped in wax. She is always pushing herself towards more volumetric shapes like her beautiful delicate flax bowls. So, when we were critiquing the rolls I challenged her to make a bowl in the solvy/newspaper/ wax technique. And immediately she challenged me to do the same with my stitched-pieced-with-scraps solvy work.

The challenge was on!

First I made a pattern, a slightly awkward process, draping over a salad bowl. Then selected a variety of scraps and then sandwiched them between the layers of solvy, went to work stitching. I don’t give myself much time to work this way. And so it was fun to feel my way forth- where to make more lacey places, where to leave open areas or closed. How to attach the bottom…Questions answered through doing. I am pleased with the results and would love more challenges to do this work so that I might develop my skill set. I’m stoked on the vessel-ness of it.

Studio 64 Pop and Sale

Studio 64 Pop and Sale

Last weekend was a gathering of “makers” hosted by a woman I met through my jeweler friend Francesca, whose is also named Fran. The space is exciting because it is still raw. Fran is an architect and her partner at the studio is an interior designer. Their spaces are developed but the large show space is not, which lends it an air of on-the-fly fun. It is a space open for classes, workshops and whatever keeps the child in all of us creating and alive. Not too “professional” or closed up.

I didn’t know anyone before signing up for this besides Francesca. And that was the interest for me. New blood, new ideas, new connections. And possibly new clients!  Which did happen. And mostly it was a very pleasant way to come together and spend a Saturday eating delicious offerings and greeting new faces. Isn’t that what it can be about!

Fall Colors in the Basket

Fall Colors in the Basket

It contains projects all cut out from last year. The gem colors- garnet,  amethyst, and citrine dupioni are cut into the 1910 tunic shape with some Cecille tops thrown in.

The time is now to finish, embellish and stitch those puppies.

Sometimes I challenge myself to finish the old before going on to the not-yet-started and therefore more up-to-the-moment exciting piece. As in delayed gratification; creating momentum by luring myself with greater pleasures.

By the time I finish the tops and tunics they will shine like polished gem stones and will have inspired me to more creative heights.

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