seasonal silk shibori ribbon colorways


everything has a season, and right now it is the season of the ginkgo here in my yard. many moons ago we planted three small 5 gallon ginkgo trees in a line out front. it must have been about 33 years ago. the center tree outpaced and eventually overshadowed it’s siblings although seemingly healthy. the main difference in the three trees being that the center tree grew wide and strong-it’s trunk parting low as if to say “climb me, climb me-do it!”. over the years cats , kids, squirrels and raccoons all obliged.
one day in a “rearranging” I decided to remove the two end trees to make more room for the center tree.
halfway through removing the second tree i wondered- what if I just moved it?
so thinking this I dug it out and planted it in the far back corner of the yard
where it has remained for over 20 years and now is twice the height of its brother tree out front. yes, it is a female and the front tree a male. each fall they both put on a spectacular show and mark time and memories for us all.
in the end they drop their bounty of gold upon the garden mulching spring bulbs and winter crops.
life is golden that way with the gingko and we.
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about 20 years younger…

and last Friday…same tree, same boys, different grandma.(plus Meagan)

and the back tree?

and did you know that the gingko tree is the official tree of Tokyo and it’s leaf Tokyo’s symbol? each fall in Tokyo there is a spectacular fall viewing and festival surrounding this stately tree.

so, introducing the colorway “ginko” and my small tribute to it’s changing leaves-a rearranging of sorts from fall to winter here.

it seems as if

Is it?
I don’t know.

But I did finally finish this piece. I had to. Some things just can’t be left undone.

can they?

He asked me if it was too late to send a thank you card.
I said “it’s never too late to say thank you. or to say I’m sorry-or I love you for that matter.” It’s really a gift to yourself.

Family new and old gathered ’round here these past few days. As far as I am concerned, whoever graces our table at Thanksgiving is added to the list of “family”. My “family” is really akin to a crazy quilt. Made by hand of the finest and scrappiest of materials. Wouldn’t have it any other way.

As far as this piece goes, it goes way back to 2007 when Karren Brito started a makiage challenge on flickr and I was learning discharge. It was just a practice piece. It resurfaced from time to time and I wondered about it here and there. At one point I decided to practice some quilting on it so I discharged some black seam binding with the arashi technique.
At some other point it resurfaced again and I started doing some hand stitching on it. Eventually, the binding and the quilted part were reunited and half the binding was stitched on. A couple of years ago it surfaced again and I started hand finishing the binding. This past summer it made it’s way into my Yosemite bag and I finished the binding.
Yesterday, I stitched on a couple of hangers to the back and cut a stick onto which to mount it. Finally. Done. Only took 5 years.

Seems I’m in this for the long haul.

-and finally it makes it’s way next week to San Francisco. As a reminder. Of many things.


a weird but short post.

for all those trying to connect with me on linkedin- I don’t do linkedin.

so all those unanswered requests will remain unanswered. sorry. it’s just too much.

I also understand that some or those requests are auto sent- another reason I don’t do linkedin.
but in other news-

have a great holiday week with friends and family.
see you on the other side.
(plus, I’ll see you in Yosemite next year- the week of Sept 15th. )

once again…

earlier this year i posted about “living in the shadow of the wind” where

the time after a show is my favorite time.  the busy preparation time is over, the workshops given, information imparted, items sold, people met, much talking, boxes returned, unpacked, put away.  and best of all,  bills paid for the coming month from proceeds of the show.

this is the time when i can “live in the shadow of the wind”. a small space in time of seeming protection from outside forces.

this time it seems though, that the shadow has grown shorter. maybe it is the shorter winter days among other things but even though the above remains true, the time i have to spend on lingering and seed planting has diminished for now.

there are many orders to create and dye for, proposals to submit, emails to return and more- but yet it was important yesterday to just take a day off and go for a bike ride, see the ocean, and have a little dinner out with phil.  he is busy too, music directing a theater production for a local HS in between gigging and private students so both our schedules are limited.

a little about the show- it was good to see so many folks excited about the silk shibori ribbon. after a long road paved with endurance it is finding a home with creative types of many colors. it really is fun to watch people approach it at the show with wonder and say “what is it?”. “i want some”, they say.  “it is beautiful-i will figure out something to do with it”.  i love when it sparks their imagination.  when it causes pause and wonder.  i love it when women bring their kids along because children simply CANNOT resist it.  they want to touch it immediately.  my favorite thing to do with kids at the show is to ask them how old they are.  it goes something like this:

me-how old are you?

them- 8 (6,10,12, etc)

me- Really!?

them- yes…

me- well it just so happens that just for today all 8 year olds get to pick out a color and get a cut of this ribbon to wonder about!

them-(eyes wide and not sure… looking at their moms or grandmothers…)Really??

me- yes! pick a color-any color….

and then of course we go on from there and they wander off stroking a length of ribbon..

and wondering.

ribbon disarray at end of day

ribbon disarray at end of day

Monday, November 4, 2013

i don’t think i have ever reblogged someone’s post before but it just doesn’t seem right to not share this one. a really, really wonderful piece of amazing indigo shibori.
(yes, i’m back and sorting through that which must be sorted through…)

Daily Japanese Textile


Shibori, stenciling

This is a woman’s cotton kimono, not an informal yukata. The huge ship, with sails billowing in the wind, is entirely rendered in several types of shibori. A great deal of planning went into the execution of this piece, which has very little in the way of repeat designs. The designer has done a masterful job of using positive and negative space.

The different positions of the three sails keep the viewer’s eye moving from place to place. Varying shades of blue show that the design underwent multiple dippings, increasing the amount of labor involved, and raising its cost.

shibori ship - sail detail Daily Japanese Textile IMG_1041

The ship itself, and the waves, are suggested with a bare minimum of lines, while the background is covered with miura shibori.

shibori ship - prow detail Daily Japanese Textile IMG_1042

Only the so-called Genji wheels at the shoulders and the jagged pine bark lozenge are repeated. The pine bark lozenge motif (matsukawabishi) frames the…

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acorns in the dyepot

recently when i was up north, i gathered a small amount of acorns.  i wondered how they would work for a little shibori workshop i might teach next year. here is a page from the notes and swatches journal- (on old silk)

fall dyer's notebook-acorns

fall dyer’s notebook-acorns

and who knew how good simmering acorns smelled?  (jude of course…)
their beauty astounds.

acorn dyepot

acorn dyepot

so, a little wondering while i continue packing up for the show.





booth 1620

being well prepared is half the victory

arashi shibori on silk

vintage kasuri and taiten

some smaller bits

materials for the indigo workshop

Shibori ribbon flower kits

Shibori ribbon, of course…

indigo, always indigo

and thank you for the overwhelming response to my workshops. when they fill 2 times over  I understand they get to automatically repeat the class next year.  that would be nice!

and…while I am leading the indigo workshop the very talented Mary Alice Sinton of Blue Bonnet Studio will be working the booth. Mary Alice is a certified teacher of both Traditional Japanese Embroidery and Japanese Bead Embroidery. She travels and teaches many classes. Come by and say hello!
Houston Quilt Festival 2013