practicality

Image

Image

just working with some vintage kimono lining silk and came across a piece that still had it’s tag on it.  these tags were placed to identify the owner when the kimono was taken apart for cleaning.  often, they were never reassembled.  i removed this tag and realized it was washi (handmade paper).  i loved that the end of it was just twisted into a string/cord and run through and tied into the silk’s selvedge. 

practical.  and lovely. 

 

 

year end announcements…

I am tying up some loose ends on things that have been in the works around here for a while.  Everything takes longer than expected it seems-especially around the holidays when there are lots of comings and goings.

Today the wind died down a bit (not completely) but the surfers were devoted to getting into the water which leaves me in complete and blissful silence to work on these unfinished details.

workshop

First- the In Studio Workshop with Richard Carbin and myself  is available in the shop. Just click here to visit the listing and read through it carefully. If you have any questions,  just use the contact form or email me.  Leaving a comment here is OK too- I can reply privately via your comment.

arashi shibori    ++++  mandalas  ===?????  

I’m excited to collaborate with Richard again.  Ours has been an wonderful pairing of interests and talents. We met virtually via Flickr several years ago becoming fans of each others work.  Richard is an ex-pat living in Nagoya Japan with his wife and two boys. In June 2009 when Phil & I visited Nagoya for the Arimatsu Shibori Festival, we made a pact to meet up and get to know each other better and in person. We visited late into the night and although our work is completely different we shared a passion for Japan, silk, and dyeing.  Afterwards, we continued getting to know each other online via Facebook and via email and decided to create a collaborative workshop. Our online workshop Indigo Mandalas (born of the original In Studio workshop last year) was the first internationally collaborative online workshop as far as I know.  We continue to inspire and draw on each others experience and interests using the internet & media, learning as we grow.

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Secondly, the Silk Study Tour to Japan is filling nicely.  We only have 4 spots (out of 20) left so,  if you think a trip to Japan to see silk sericulture, beautiful textiles, a natural dye workshop and more are in your future for May of 2013-contact me soon.  We never really know if we will repeat this tour-so far our third biennial tour. Life has a way of keeping us on our toes and in the present which is a good thing and keeps up from putting off those things that we really want to do but somehow don’t. More and more I realize that today is the day!   Click the link for details and feel free to contact me if you you have any questions at all. I’m getting excited all over again.  New things await us in Japan every time we go!

a few announcements-

First- I forgot to mention that the daily dyer subscription will cover the time during the upcoming Silk Study Tour to Japan. So the added bonus is that if you sign up for the full 6 months you will get to see a bit of the behind-the-scenes tour.  Sometimes dyers have to go to Japan!  We are gathering a great group.  There are still a few spots open so if you have been imagining yourself in the land of the rising sun…come on along! Not that you need a little tempting or anything but here is a fun flickr set of photos of past trips- and a little video just for fun…

Next- there will be a new in-studio workshop announcement next week. Dates look like they will be end of January/ early February.   It will be a combination workshop featuring Richard Carbin’s mandalas and my arashi shibori techniques.  Day one will be mandalas with Richard and myself (assisting) and day two will be with me learning arashi shibori techniques and Richard assisting .  Day three will be a free dye/play day to practice some of the skills you have learned.  We are still working out the details but you can sign up for day one, day two, day one & two (a little discount), and day three will be reserved for only those who have taken day one or two or both (both days will get you a nice discount on day three).   We will work with procion (Richard’s fave), colorhue, and acid dyes and even the indigo vat.  It will be limited to 6 people each day. I’m just getting things set up so I can list it in the shop sensibly. So much going on right now.  Does it ever slow down?  I wonder…what if we combined arashi and mandalas….

arashi shibori

+

mandalas

who knows?

 

 

rainy monday

but a nice rain. a rain that doesn’t drown us but one that feeds and wets everything to the core.  the  plants seem happy and thankful.  since it was rainy yesterday too (and for several days before that) i stitched up some holiday reds that will go out in orders today.

if you need one or two, just visit the shop.  i’ve got my poinsettia groove on at the moment.  (also available as a kit with video instructions)

poinsettia

and since i was working on video too, i made this little “movie trailer” for the daily dyer. we aren’t very  far from Hollywood you know…

i would embed it here for you but for some weird reason Youtube is messing with me.  it keeps inserting the wrong video despite restarts, browser clearing, and all other sensible fixes.  so just click the link- i’ve got other stuff to do…it’s Monday.

daily dyer trailer…

the daily dyer

something new...

something new…

Lately I’ve been so very thankful to everyone who has been turning out for classes both online and in person. It is a real pleasure to see so much interest in dyeing, silk, indigo and just general interest in what I do.  It is wonderous to see you the students come to these classes with your own intentions and desires and then take the information off to create on your own.  Some of you create just for the sheer pleasure of it, some with the intention of starting your own small business.  It is great to know that many are thinking in that direction-thinking independently. Just keep going is what I have to say about that.  It takes time.  Do not expect things to happen immediately, instantly, or forever. Start small. Grow it.  You are the seed. You have to keep plugging away at it. Inventing, creating, wondering on a daily basis. Seeds need nourishment and so will you.

This leads me to the next thing.  With this level of interest the daily emails with questions grow. The requests to go here and there increase. Some of the questions sound like this:

-when is your next class?(working on that…deciding…figuring out finances…)

-will you be teaching near me soon?(dunno-where are you?)

- can I come work for you-for free-so I can learn! (surprisingly, many of these offers! thank you so much for the offer-but I can’t do that for many reasons)

-can you come teach here in Israel/Japan/Canada/? (wouldn’t that be cool?)

-I’m in your neighborhood, can I stop by? (uh, sorry-no)

-we’d love to have you at our show will you come? (unlikely-many to consider and many financial considerations are involved)

-I need to turn in a report on my favorite artist-will you answer these 20 questions?(most of which the answers can be found by reading a few pages on my blog-but thanks for thinking of me)

-and myriad questions about dyeing,shibori, silk, indigo, growing indigo, seeds, shows, orders (YAY!- helps pay the bills!) and so much more. Time!  I need more time (maybe time traveling is an answer)!

I wonder how to divy myself up in enough pieces to satisfy more- to spread my growing knowledge further and the daily practice of it in a way that serves us all? In a way that helps me and helps you.

I tested this idea out some time back but I wasn’t quite ready for it.  I am now.  Things come with their own time and place and I think now is the time.  So here it is:

the daily dyer

-a place for daily snippets of dyeing for a living- which is what I do. Even I don’t know what each day will offer- that is part of the lesson. But come along and get a glimpse. This doesn’t take the place of the other more technique based classes or in person workshops (or the blog here either). It’s meant to teach in a different way.  And I think we all know that there are many ways of learning and that people learn in different ways. Along the way. Yes, along the way. As I write that, I realize that is what this is about. Globe trotting is very costly- the teachers costs must be covered-  and thus workshops for those sorts of events are expensive and understandably not in the budget for everyone.

For you, it will give you a part of me and my work that hasn’t been available so far. It will give you another way to learn. $60 for 6 months. That’s about 35 cents a day- the cost of a daily good cup of coffee when I was born-over 50 years ago…or the cost of two overpriced cups of coffee a month now ( I may have been listening to too much public radio these days..).

For me, it allows me to reach further, deeper, and continue serving in another affordable way for all of us. Also, it’s a daily commitment, a practice of daily teaching and learning.

But really, what have you got to lose? You can sign up for a one month subscription for $25 which can be applied towards the 6 month subscription if you add it before the one month ends. (kind of a layaway plan of sorts.)

The daily dyer begins December 15 and continues through June 15, 2013.

Subscriptions for the first 6 months will be available now through Dec 15th only. I’ve also added the possibility of gift certificates in the shop- and some are conveniently set at the price of a daily dyer subscription.   I wonder if you’ll check it out…

for baby boy Z

on the eve of November’s full moon, i finished this little cotton flannel vintage baby jacket for baby Z.  found it in a heap of fabrics at a swap meet a while ago. i imagine some mother or grandmother in the late 50’s stitched the kittens and blanket stitched the edges for a special little baby who today must be about my age. it is so very sweet. someone had kept it all these years until it landed in that heap of cloth.  it was white but i took it for the indigo vat for ¢25, washed and overdyed it in the natural vat and set it aside.

when baby boy Z was born i got it out to send to him but in the this and that of things it was shuffled a couple of times until it appeared on the table with a silk velvet moon sitting on it. somehow the moon made its way there. i realized that this is was it was waiting for so i stitched it on with some silk thread. the silks iridescence catches the light- like a light catcher to shine the way.  a new silk bow was also needed.
i remember this story fondly- perhaps my favorite childhood poem by Eugene Field:

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
Sailed off in a wooden shoe —
Sailed on a river of crystal light,
Into a sea of dew.
“Where are you going, and what do you wish?”
The old moon asked the three.
“We have come to fish for the herring fish
That live in this beautiful sea;
Nets of silver and gold have we!”
Said Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

The old moon laughed and sang a song,
As they rocked in the wooden shoe,
And the wind that sped them all night long
Ruffled the waves of dew.
The little stars were the herring fish
That lived in that beautiful sea —
“Now cast your nets wherever you wish —
Never afeard are we”;
So cried the stars to the fishermen three:
Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

All night long their nets they threw
To the stars in the twinkling foam —
Then down from the skies came the wooden shoe,
Bringing the fishermen home;
‘Twas all so pretty a sail it seemed
As if it could not be,
And some folks thought ’twas a dream they’d dreamed
Of sailing that beautiful sea —
But I shall name you the fishermen three:
Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes,
And Nod is a little head,
And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies
Is a wee one’s trundle-bed.
So shut your eyes while mother sings
Of wonderful sights that be,
And you shall see the beautiful things
As you rock in the misty sea,
Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three:
Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

for baby boy Z

stitching detail