Saturday, May 30, 2009

Shibori Dyeing Students!

If you have taken Shibori Dyeing with me at Quilt University and would like to take the second part of the course please let Carol know ASAP so that she can give you the invitation to join the fun starting July 3rd.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Back at it today!

For students in my Quilt University class- Gutta Resist on Silk- here is Curt my office manager. He has taken some falls and really bunged up his lip this year in a series of dives he took while modeling for me.
Here is the gutta stole I told you about with the purple lines that supposedly were "washable". See area in the white dove. I confused this stole with one I also made that year that had scenes from the person's childhood on it. It doesn't matter- the dastardly deed was done on this piece so I had to make two. Live and learn.

So today I am back from the dead. The only good thing about what happened is that I lost 2 pounds. I'm so vain.

Today I will start to do a bit more experimenting with soy wax to see how it holds up with full immersion dyeing during the batik process- not supposed to do well but I have to test it because 1) students are going to try it and 2) Carol is wanting the info for an upcoming QU newsletter.

I also have to clean the toilets and paint a frame. Shall I post pictures of that? What else? Oh yes- I have to pull all the laundry out of my closet and wash the sheets.

If I get this artist in residency grant for next year they pay me but the biggest part of my agreement is that I let them film the month long art making process. What on earth will they have to shoot if I can't clean toilets or make shopping lists? Guess that's the point of having an air tight proposal.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

UUUUUUUuuuuhhhhhhh-day 2

Thought I was better. High fever returned. Stayed in bed. Popsicles and ice water.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Well I didn't bargain for THIS-

Talk about mundane. I woke up last night with either food poisoning or the flu. No, I will not post pictures. Going back to bed. arrrrrrrrrgggg.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

What happens in the in between times....yawn....

I haven't posted anything in a long time because nothing exciting has been happening. Perhaps this is when I SHOULD blog the mundane; the every day; the things that happen in between exciting projects. Might be pretty boring...It took me three days just to clean the dye studio. Maybe you would like to see the process of getting organized for The Critique Group which meets here June 3rd. It should be a Big Snore but is all a part of what I do as a professional fiber artist.

I spent a bit of time reviewing an art magazine I bought a long time ago but hadn't read and saw a lot of work by fiber artists I know and there is a temptation when looking at those glossy, perfect, amazing spreads that can make one feel sick! I realized that it all looks SO perfect that you get the feeling that everyone is racing ahead of you and leaving you in the dust when in fact- no one has really arrived anywhere ahead behind or along side anyone else. We are all on a journey. The face we want to present to the public is that we have hit the top of the heap right now and there's nothing left to pursue. What we do not see is the mess in the studio; the food spoiling in the 'frig; the art work that never made it past the first step of the process.

Okay. So be it. This week I will blog the boring side of fiber art. Should make everyone feel better about themselves. Ready? Get out a pillow as you may need to snore a little..... You've seen the fun stuff. Now you'll see the real stuff. Yawn.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Banner pictures from Sierra Vista United Methodist Church

Awhile back I made these banners for the Sierra Vista United Methodist Church in West Texas. I document their construction earlier on this blog.
Here is how they look up and finished- ta-dahhh..... Mission accomplished.
Here are the "Fisher of Man" panels located on the left hand side of the sanctuary.

"Flames" panels located on the right hand wall of the sanctuary.
Here is what Gwen said about the first church service after they were installed:
Hi Marjie!
Here are some better photos of our new lovely banners! Two are a bit darker than others - I wanted you to see how well they compliment the stained glass windows that some of us created years ago. This morning, Ben and I sat in a new spot - where we can easily see both windows at once. What a treat! Toward the end of the service, I watched members as they went to the altar rail for communion. While kneeling at the front, many just stared at the banners with such a peace-filled expression on their faces, rather than bow their heads in prayer. We could not be happier with your work! Thank you.
Blessings and Peace,
It doesn't get any better than that!
It is my privileged and honor to make art for the sanctuary.

Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mini portfolio

I am applying for acceptance into an artist in residency program here in California. The paper work has been filled out so all that is left to do is transfer these images to a CD and send it.
The pieces I selected attempt to show the range of mediums I enjoy working with as a fiber artist.
This piece you have seen before on this blog. I took our old Weber BBQ and sewed hand dyed silk into glowing coals beneath the grill; made silk stuffed hamburgers with fabric paint lines for the grill marks; made silk stuffed "dawgs"; and made the BBQ sauce out of fabric paint which was poured into the Tupperware container.
I had a blast making this and it went well in the show that contained work by my fellow California Fiber Artists at the Artery in Davis last summer. Size: 20" x 46" x 26"
Gutta Resist Poncho
This poncho has also been documented on this blog in August of 2008. I photographed the process of applying the resist and the dyes. It is made out of Crepe de Chine silk.
I love this picture. The outline of my daughter's face against the black background is beautiful. Size: 55" x 76"
This fiber art piece has also been seen on this blog in the early days of my blogging attempts. The piece has morphed and morphed again several times and for now it is finished.
The motivation behind this piece comes from a day I spent in Hiroshima with my husband and two adult children. It was a remarkable experience that changed me forever. I have not been able to talk about it without crying even though we were there 2 years ago. The Peace Memorial and the city; the people; the quiet; ground zero; the horror of it all is not something I can let go of and as a consequence- I make art about it. This is the second piece to commemorate the event. There are more to come. Yes. Perhaps many more to come. Size: 72"x 47.5"

Batiked Iris

This is an example of the batik process using direct dyeing. It is simple and one of a series I did using a minimal amount of wax. The size is 31.5" x 36"

Layered Fish
You've seen this piece as well. I documented the evolution of an idea on this blog.
I like this piece but am not 100% happy with it.
I was thinking about the concept of layers and wanted to show that through the theme of fish. You have the water depth, the fish, the surface of the water and the lilies floating on the surface of the water. Breaking through now and then are the fish backs and their mouths.
On this piece I used fabric paint, tulle, and hand dyed raw silk. It almost works but falls short. What I really want is a layer of glass with holes cut in it where the mouths are. That will be the next piece. Size:21" x 33.5"

Tribute To Joel

Some people bronze baby shoes. I bronzed our son's jeans and t-shirt. Well, not exactly bronzed it. First I dipped the entire thing in house paint and allow that to dry. No small feat. Then I used 4 cans of copper metallic spray paint and finished it off with a bamboo rod to give it an oriental kimonoesque flavor. Like a shogun. Like a samurai. Like a ninja. "Call me Dragon." "Call me Night Hawk".

What I love most about this piece is that even though it has been awhile since my son wore these clothes, his shape remains. The neckline is the best but you can't see it very well from the photograph. It's all stretched out and saggy. Perfect. Size: 51" x 66" x 3"

Tribute to Marcail

This piece was a lot of fun to make. I knew that I wanted to work more with ready made garments and this beautiful Chinese silk blouse came to mind. I called our daughter to make sure I could swipe it from her closet and then diluted Paverpol fabric stiffener and dunked it into the mess. I then draped it over my mannequin Curt who had temporary boobies taped to his chest. You can see the pictures on the blog somewhere below. Anyway- Curt was patient while it dried. Then I made the base and here she is. Size: 30" x 24" x 6". Lovely lotus blossom.

That's all for now. I will send in the paper work this week and hear back sometime in August. I'll tell you what my proposal is later. The residency is for 1 month and will be either in the San Francisco Bay area or Los Angeles. What I need is a rather large population of women from India and/or Pakistan to make my project work.

It's going to be a wonderful experience but I am competing with hundreds of other artists for the chance to work on our own proposals so we'll see. We'll see.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Shibori dyeing 4 yards of silk

I had some habotai silk that had been dyed beige from another project. It would be the perfect base for my experiment.
I started to hand baste the entire 4 yard length from selvage to selvage. Took me several days to do this procedure as I have a lot of other things on my plate at the moment besides this.

Finished and ready for the dyes. My goal was to make the silk a more attractive color and to add detailing with the dye and fabric paint. I didn't want the yardage to be too busy but certainly more interesting than flat beige!

I applied the darker brown with a 2" wide brush. I lightly applied the dye along the raised folds knowing that habotai silk absorbs the dye quickly and will most likely not show much mottling. That's okay! I wanted the most detailing to come later as you will see...this is primarily to redye the fabric and when dry, get the brown to pool in the creases and be a darker brown enhanced with fabric paints.

Here is a terrible picture (sorry) of the silk with the dye applied to one side and then flipped over for the other side to receive the dye.

Once both sides were dyed, I then applied a layer of diluted metallic fabric paint along the raised folds on both sides. The whole thing was allowed to dry completely before opening, ironing and rinsing.

I am very happy with the results. I got just what I was hoping for- a much richer brown with very dark halos of brown around the gold paint. Not too much and not too little.

I learned a lot from this piece. The information will come in handy when I start studying Indian Sari.
This is the first in a series of yardage pieces that will begin the process of weeding out fabrics and techniques so that a more precise design can be achieved next time. It's all good!
Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Etsy store has Fabric Designs stuff

Remember all that hand dyed fabric I had in the dye studio? I had to move it off the table so while I was shoving it around I started sorting, ironing, piling it up and thought- "Man, I need to sell this stuff!"
Along with a boat load of cotton fat quarters, I also have over 100 hand dyed silk scarves. All of it was at some point in time either the end of some custom runs or practice pieces for other commissions.
If you would like to take a look at what I have so far, go to and type in hand dyed fabric to see what I've posted so far. My name is fabricdesigns627.
I have NO idea how this works or how it will sell or even IF it will sell but it was fun fooling around with the stuff. I'll let you know how it goes.
Thanks for looking!

Here's a picture for your viewing pleasure-

About Me

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Woodland, California, United States
I am a fiber artist. I am a teacher. I am a Reverend. I teach, I create, I counsel, I listen.

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