Thursday, July 26, 2012

Craftwear Exhibit at Sunapee

Tuesday was a big day for me.  I dropped off 15 jackets at the Mount Sunapee Lodge in Newbury, New Hampshire for the upcoming Craftwear Exhibit that is part of the 79th Annual Craftsmen Fair.  Four of the jackets will go into the judged exhibit and the other 11 will be in the retail section.

Sunday night I finished up the last jacket I needed for the show.  I called this one My Secret.  

I used an African hand-dyed damask that I'd purchased last summer at QSDS from Becky Hancock of St. Theresa Textile Trove.  I love the complexity of the design with the drama of the tie-dyed design combined with the subtlety of the woven pattern.  It's a softer cotton than many of the African damasks with a lovely hand.  I added a bit of drama myself with the bright fuchsia lining - and subtlety through couched threads that hint at the lining color.

Here's the back.

This is my first really big show - tens of thousands of people attend each year - so I'm anxious to see how people respond.  I've done all I can to make the jackets beautiful, easy to wear and care for, and durable enough to look good for a lifetime.  Now I just have to wait to see if others think so too.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Floating Flowers

Last week when I finished up a jacket I planned to go right on to another - until I discovered that I hadn't prewashed the fabric I intended to use.  We were up in Maine with no laundry facilities, so I had to figure out a fill-in project.  Luckily I'd brought along some Mokuba stabilizer and a selection of threads and yarns just in case.

I'd also brought along some samples of a sheer fabric with embroidered motifs in case I could figure out a way to incorporate it into a scarf.  Here's the result:

Floating Flowers   

I decided to cut out the flower and leaf motifs from the sheer fabric.  I used the large flowers as a fancy border and scattered the leaves over the length of the scarf.  Once the clear film was in place, I couched a fine sparkly yarn in lengthwise stripes.  I alternated stitching the yarns on the front and back of the piece to capture the leaves in the middle.  Then I stitched random swirls all over it with a light green thread to hold it all together.  

Stitching swirls instead of a grid was more fun and maybe a little faster, but I could only do it for a little while at a time.  It made me kind of dizzy - especially because you have to pay very close attention to what you are doing to make sure that you've caught everything.  

I love the lacy look it gives.  And...serendipity...look at how well it goes with one of my recent jackets.

Circular Thinking and Floating Flowers

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Blue Skies & Rainbows

Thanks to my friend MJ for giving me the idea for the name of my latest jacket--Blue Skies & Rainbows--in a comment about my last post.  That one showed the fabrics and yarn I'd gathered before starting.

Here's the finished jacket.
 I cut holes in the outside fabric so that the great batik lining would show through in the front, back and sleeves.  I added some iridescent, hand-made glass buttons for accents.
I made this one while we were up in Maine last week.  It was such a pleasure to be able to work straight through on this one.

And while we were there we saw both blue skies and rainbows - a fitting cap to the project.  Here's one of the rainbows.