Tag Archives: silk study tour

thinking ahead-and wondering a bit

~just wanted to let you know i have added two pages here on the blog.
both require some thought, consideration and planning ahead so take your time to wonder a bit.
you can reach the new pages through the links below in this post or by clicking their links in the header above.

giant silk moth display from the Silk Center Takasaki, Japan


the first one is for the High Desert Silk Experience workshop/retreat in St. George Utah. a great opportunity to take some classes all about silk in a beautiful location. Signups are ongoing until Dec.1 or when the classes fill. i think we are about halfway there now…

the second page is for those of you who might want to consider joining us for the 2013 Silk Study Tour to Japan in May of that year. that might seem like a long way off, but planning ahead is the key to a successful tour.

in other news, i’m going to start raising a new crop of silkworms. hopefully, they will be the ones we will use in the workshop in UT to demonstrate the silk reeling skills we have learned on the previous two Silk Study Tours. i’m waiting for the weather to cool slightly so my eggs can be shipped-apparently, it is too hot for them to be delivered now.

ohayo gozaimasu-gurenisu desu! おはようございます

I took some inspiration from this photo (turns out it wasn’t taken at the LA Arboretum but in Herefordshire England-my son was pulling my leg) and also from an email I received from someone wanting me to make some special silk shibori flowers for a sacred event. I dyed up some spring wisteria- summer wedding (kekkon no natsu) colors.

Then I heard the sea calling me. Maybe it’s a pisces thing. Definitely a water (mizu) thing.

rising tides

Check out the link in the first line to see the current schedule if you didn’t get the newsletter direct to your email inbox. You can sign up for my ribbon and dye class in Cincinnati or the indigo workshop at the Japanese American National Museum by using the links and info there. The online class is gathering and there is just one week left before i close the registration. If you want to see what the supply list looks like, you can see the class setup here. All workshop material kit orders received to date are shipped so look out for yours if you ordered one.

The Silk Study Tour to Japan is filled and I am busy with various details. The gathered group is excited and we are getting to know each other a bit.

I just discovered that I am going to still be in Japan for the annual Arimatsu shibori festival! Held the first weekend of June every year, this is just too good to miss! While searching online for a nearby ryokan, I discovered that Yoshiko Wada has a tour planned to Japan for this event, if you are interested. I did not know of this tour before! It is quite a bit different from ours although it looks like they will also be going to Kiryu. Looking at the page it appears as if there are spots available. I don’t know much about her tours except for what I have read online here so check it out!

So now it’s off to finish taxes and get ready for Puyallup and more…
mata-ne! (listening to Japanese POD101 daily now…)

makiage, indigo, and a new Japan silk study tour!

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

and finally-

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…