Saturday Sunshine and Collaboration

Yay!!!  The weekend is off to a beautiful sunny start!  I'm going to ignore the weather report for snow tonight and just soak in the beautiful rays coming through my studio windows.  I'm working hard on my on-line workshop!  I am really, really getting excited to be able to present the first workshop as I have already got great ideas for mini-workshops based off of the first.  I bought my display easel so I can begin filming my videos (LOL).  Good lighting might be a problem, but we will work with what we have.  I really wish that I had ten people in front of me right now to teach to.  Trying to put it all down on paper is twice the work, but I know it will be worth it in the end!!!  Most important is my desire to help others easily create their own personal imagery and it is what continues to drive this creation and fuel me with energy. 

I wanted to share the piece of fabric that Holly McLean sent me.  I was so excited for Holly and her article in Quilting Arts!  We had been chatting before her article came out and we both share the love of nature and organic shapes in our artwork.  We thought it would be fun to swap a piece of fabric to use as a background for a piece of fiber art that we would create.  A fun little collaboration between internet friends and fiber art souls.

I have Holly's fabric hung up on my design board and turn it every day to take a different look at it.  This is a gorgeous piece of ice-dyed fabric that Holly made and she added stencils using discharge dye.  I am especially drawn to the ice-dyed fabrics because of their unique lines and color intensity.  This piece speaks of winter and angels to me on one hand and the promise of spring flowers and colors melting through winter's iced blanket.  I'm still thinking.....

I think collaborating one-on-one with another artist is a fabulous way to stretch your creativity and step outside of your normal process. I have collaborated on a few different projects from art dolls to wearable art and journalling. This piece below was created by 8 fiber artists and myself following a workshop in Oregon with Nancy Shriber on Sashiko stitching back in 2004. The collaboration (or "round robin") lasted for 9 months, included a write up by each artist on each person's garment and their inspiration for adding their personal touch and the reasons why they chose the pattern or embellishment that they did.  All of the garments as a group eventually went on tour with the Sewing and Quilting Expo in 2006.  Nancy had ties with Threads Magazine.  We were all thrilled to say the least!

Here is my write-up that accompanied my garment on it's journey.


Round Robin
The white walls of my new house and the various shades of green in the trees that surround my new environment have probably had some impact on my inspiration for my Sashiko project.

This truly is a project of trust since I have already formulated in my mind how I would like my finished garment to look and I realize that it won’t necessarily come back to me looking that way. But that’s the amazing part of sharing a piece of ourselves with each other. I know that when my garment returns to me, it will not just be a mix of different ingredients. It will be a savory stew with a touch of spices, exotic vegetables cautiously watched over as its flavor builds and the time is right to taste the magic.

Although we may all find some part of this project that doesn’t appeal to us, we will all find something in each person’s garment that speaks somehow only to us. That’s the magic we will taste in the end.


Margaret Applin

When providing my feelings on the collaboration, I answered:

What was your favorite part of the round robin and why?
The round robin experience within any format is a lot of fun. Each month (or whatever the schedule mailing period is) you receive a new project. You open this package like it was your birthday gift, set it out so you can breath in all the fabulous techniques and colors of the current piece and immediately the creative sparks start flying. It is not only the starting point for some great idea building, but a learning experience as well. Every new project you receive is filled with new ideas and techniques, different personal styles and directions. This was my favorite part of the round robin; knowing that not only would I be adding my own ideas and techniques and personal style to this project, but also learning from everyone else's.

Have a fabulous and creative day and I will check back tomorrow!



Holly's fabric is a dream-come-true, and I think you nailed it, on both counts! Looking forward to it!
HollyM said…
I'm glad you like the fabric. It looks pretty on line. I a currently testing out ideas for yours. I have cut off a strip large enough to leave a piece to be 10 by 12. The strip i s big enough for a postcard or one long piece.
Your garment round robin was interesting to read about and what a beautiful piece. I love sashiko.
elle said…
Ice dyeing makes pretty cool effects. Your vest is lovely and I think round robins teach us more about ourselves than anything. Happy Weekend!