But I did finally finish this piece. I had to. Some things just can’t be left undone.
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 recent trip to Seattle allowed me to have a little stitching time, something that seems to elude me when i am home at work with all the other things there are to do around here. but in anticipation of the short trip i prepared a couple of things i could work on should i be fortunate to get the chance. i did, and was able to stitch up one makiage piece on a fine lightweight cotton. something someone sent my way that was no longer of use to them. a lovely piece of fabric.
here is the piece in progress- shot next to some lovely hosta leaves at maggie’s house. we don’t grow these in socal-probably too hot and dry i expect-and they were just magnificent.
it is now confirmed and i can now announce some exciting news- the formation of a second Silk Study Tour to Japan in may of 2011! details are in the works and the tour itinerary and costs will be available in PDF form around June 1st. i was in Seattle to work out details and meet with our Japanese coordinator. we had a planning session at maggie’s-
(i started a facebook page for the tour which i will add to soon. feel free to visit it and “like” it if you want to see regular updates in your feed.)
while i was there we practiced degumming silk cocoons and making silk mawata. mawata is a japanese term meaning “spread out”. each mawata consists of a number of degummed silk cocoons stretched over a frame. these mawata can then be used in various ways- for spinning silk yarns, creating silk paper, felting and stitching projects. maggie is teaching a class at the Houston show on how to do this and we were practicing what we learned in Japan last year on the silk study tour. see the complete list of silk experience classes here.
so today i unpacked and got back to where i left off and started pulling up threads on my stitched makiage piece. it is approximately 1/2 yard of 45″ cotton. pulling up the gathering threads is always a little anxiety ridden-one broken thread and poof! fortunately the shibori gods were on my side (plus a little experience and patience) and this is what i was left with-
several dips into the natural indigo vat-
here you can see the piece while it is oxidizing-note the greenish color
the exciting part is releasing the fabric from the stitches to see the result- hopefully without cutting any holes in the fabric. i managed to get past this pitfall as well resulting in this:
the whole cloth drying-
just a reminder, i am giving an indigo workshop May 28 & 29. there’s still a spot available if you are tempted…