Tuesday, June 22, 2010

always order dessert & 6th street design school

I was thrilled to see my trellis tea towel in the honey colorway on two excellent blogs over the last few days.

First, it was part of a lazy brunch collection on Always Order Dessert. Oh, brunch, my favorite meal! 

Then it was included as part of a trellis roundup on 6th Street Design School yesterday.

Thanks, ladies! 

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Friday, June 18, 2010

5 o'clock crows : in the real world

My favorite thing about participating in the local arts markets has been meeting my customers and having the chance to develop relationships with people who appreciate handmade in general and my work in particular. I especially love it when people who have bought from me in the past stop by to say hello and chat for a minute. And when I'm lucky enough to get a picture of 5 o'clock crows in the real world, I get so very excited!

I was just so lucky earlier this week, when I had these pictures of an order of custom flags waiting for me in my inbox.

  How gorgeous with the double wreaths!

How pretty! Makes me want to go pour myself a tall glass of lemonade and sit on the porch!

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

new fabric : bleach discharge

I've been playing with bleach discharge over the last few weeks. I love the unpredictability of bleach discharge; I never know quite what I'm going to get. 

This is fabric as it was dyed, with no discharging.

hand dyed 3-color batik on 100% cotton

Here's a piece that I dyed the same colors as above and then discharged using a solution of bleach and water.

hand dyed 3-color batik and bleach discharge on 100% cotton

I love where the wax cracked and the pattern discharged a bit.

hand dyed 3-color batik and bleach discharge on 100% cotton

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

it's a floor cleaner, it's a dessert topping, it's BOTH!

I was in the midst of a sewing marathon yesterday while I was thinking of different ways I could display my tea towels, which led me to think of furoshiki, the Japanese art of using fabric for wrapping. As multi-functionality and eco-friendliness become more and more important, I'm more and more interested in making some furoshiki cloths, both for personal use and for sale.

After all of this thinking about multi-tasking products, this skit from Saturday Night Live popped in my head. It's been about a billion years since I've seen this "commercial", on VHS taped from TV no less. ha!

Needless circuitous thought, yes, but when I've been cutting and sewing fabric by myself all day, my mind gets into strange circles.

oh, Chevy Chase...

Speaking of old SNL skits, which it seems this post is mostly about, I remember thinking that the Adobe Car one was riotously funny... tennis whites, ha! And Swill Water... oh, so gross! Does anyone else remember these?

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

summer goals - june edition

Last month, I decided to start setting seasonal goals instead of month-by-month, and I think this was an excellent decision. I was really productive, but I didn't feel too overwhelmed by my massive list. win/win!

Here's where things stand:   

Firm Deadlines: 
- May 16 talk CFAL (whoops, that was yesterday, but I think I should still get to cross it off in June) (done!)
- finish custom orders (woohoo!) (done!)
- June, July, August BRAM
- art show entries from calender (missed the deadline, but started a series and added new deadlines, so I get partial credit)
- line sheet / catalog  (by August 1) (done! I need some new pictures for my "products" page, but I have a usable document)
- submit to design blogs (by September 1) (somewhat working on this, a few other things need to happen first, so it's on the back burner until mid-summer)

Projects that have been hanging out on the list for too long and need to get crossed off so i can move on with my life:
- write up 3 patterns (for blog / submission) (nope)
- finish orange quilt (i looked at it, but no credit)
- art quilts / small texture language pieces from sketchbook (photos and show entries) (started! partial credit)
- fleur de lys pattern (SERIOUSLY!) (done!)
- photos of all new items taken, edited and posted (working on this)
- full size samples (other than what I'm carrying in inventory, nope)
- photos of quilts already finished (nope)
- how to batik for blog (video / pics?) (nope)

- maintain ongoing marketing efforts (yes!)
- implement at least 3 new marketing ideas / reach out in 3 new directions ( done!  (ad, aha moment, food bloggers picnic))
- check with biz and marketing plans, evaluate progress and direction (done! both plans need some editing and revisions)
- follow up on existing store/gallery leads (in progress: 2 done, 2 in progress, 5th and 6th need to be addressed)
- 5 - 10 new store/gallery leads (I have 2-4 new leads written in my sketchbook, need to add them to the list)
- 5 - 10 new deadlines added to calender (I printed out at least 5 prospectuses for shows I'm interested in with realistic deadlines, need to add to calender)
- (new) revisions to biz and marketing plans
- (new) fleur pattern into production, build up inventory
- (new) 3 more new marketing/promotion ideas
- (new) improve online conversion rate
Holidays: (NO! d'oh!)
-determine what to carry for holidays and how much (how many markets?)
-design new patterns and dye swatches for new holiday / fall / winter colors
-full-size samples
-begin production

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Friday, June 4, 2010

new fabric

I've been playing with some new patterns lately, trying to loosen up a bit and have more fun with my work. I feel like I've had a bit of tunnel vision, and while focus is good, too much of the same thing is nobody's friend.

To that end, I carved a few new stamps, heated up the wax pot and got down to it. The process was limited to 3 dye baths / 2 waxings to keep things moving along. I want to use these experimental pieces in some art quilts/fiber art pieces that have been in my sketchbooks for months now, so I kept the palette to sandy browns.

These two pieces are my favorites: 

3-color hand dyed batik fabric
100% cotton

3-color hand dyed batik fabric
100% cotton

(I love the idea of using the second piece as a whole-cloth quilt and really playing with the quilting against all that texture... maybe even do a few more colors to develop some more depth to the pattern)

I cut the fabric into 2" strips and started piecing it together. I have a few ideas that are the guiding factors here, but I'm trying to work intuitively as much as possible. I need to get away from over-thinking everything.

Here's a closer view:

From here, I'm thinking about some printing, applique, embroidery, wax, some tearing and mending...? What do you think?

(Sorry the colors in the photos are a little washed out... I procrastinated about taking the pictures, and of course it's raining buckets now that I really need to do it. I had to resort to taking the shots in my studio instead of using natural light. Hopefully you get the idea nonetheless)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


I'm still thinking about books from my last post, so it seems appropriate to mention the Pelican Project at things magazine.


I love old books, don't you?

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via ink+wit
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