Wednesday, 27 July 2016

basscoast 2016 popupshop

handmade wooden tent, painted with iron oxide and brass dust/organic linseed oil paints

handmade wooden rack painted with iron oxide/organic linseed oil paint
antique english tatted linen dragon lace - I bought this from the daughter of the woman who bought this lace in england over 100 years ago. The dragons remind me of chinese dragons which causes me to wonder if this lace was inspired by the 'orientalism' that was in fashion in the early 1900's in england. typing the word orientalism into the dictionary on my computer comes up with this: "the representation of Asia in a stereotyped way that is regarded as embodying a colonist attitude." I like this description as I find that this lace invokes deeper thought of its origins as well as of the social climate in which it was made. i like that it is so old and that I have a bit of a story from where I got it and where it came from. it is in remarkable condition for being over a 100 years old. as a fan of dragons, of old things with a story and of lace...this piece really spoke to me (notice the collection of gemstones these antique dragons are presiding over!)

arashi shibori hemp/organic cotton jersey scarf dyed with dyes from trees and iron ~naturally dyed granny lace vest w/brass buttons ~hemp and organic cotton stretch pencil skirt dyed with trees and iron ~ hypersthene pendant on iron oxide/beeswaxed hemp twine
arashi shibori is a type of shibori which is the japanese art of tying or stitching and dyeing fabric to create patterns of varying complexity. 'arashi' means rainstorm in reference to its diagonal pattern. arashi shibori hemp/OGcotton jersey scarf - dyed with trees and iron ~naturally dyed granny lace vest w/brass buttons ~hypersthene pendant on iron oxide/linseed oil/beeswaxed hemp twine

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

more fleurs...

         needle felted naturally dyed merino wool flower embellished with faceted serpentine beads

hemp/tussah silk charmeuse rose with merino wool leaves and blue heron feathers on a european organic cotton lace and faceted smoky quartz beads headband

     felted merino wool poppies - dyed with madder and embellished with hematite beads. merino                                   wool leaves dyed with osage sawdust and natural indian indigo

painted with hand drawn and hand cut stencils with custom paints made from logwood, lac, cutch, osage and iron on ahimsa silk jersey


Saturday, 6 June 2015

polyphemus silk moth

recently I discovered that these silk moths live in the forest I live in...these photos were taken outside my home last year. then a week or so ago, many more (about 20) showed themselves to me. this is amazing to me as they live in their moth forms for only a few days during which they look for a mate. I left my porch light on one night which is why I saw them..and I found out that leaving on a porch light at night not only attracts them, it confuses them greatly, interfering with their natural processes. now that I've learned that, I make sure to turn the porch lights off at night.

these moths are related to the tussah silk moth from china. I have been working with tussah silk the past few years and it is one of my favorite fibres. when I did a search on duck duck go the other day, I found that the polyphemus moth creates a silk cocoon much like the tussah moth and it can be used for spinning! I have yet to find one of their cocoons in the forest..but it is good to know that they are there. I will keep my eyes open and perhaps I can cultivate a friendship with these beautiful moths and they will share their silk with me :)

Friday, 30 May 2014

Thursday, 31 October 2013

photos from the Kismet fashion show Oct 25, 2013

All of the clothes in this collection are made from natural and organic fabrics and were hand dyed with natural dyes. The following photos are some highlights from the collection and were taken by Wilson Lau at the Kismet fashion show at Ayden Gallery in Vancouver, B.C.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

sneak peak from the upcoming collection ~ with natural dyes, magic stones and feathers found in nature~

felted merino wool flower dyed with Madder and Natural Indigo, leaves made with felted black merino sheep's wool and needle felted with Tussah silk. Tussah silk is a type of wild silk..made from discarded cocoons found in the wild. The feathers are from a Barred Owl....found in nature by me. Its hard to see in this photo..but the flower is attached to a vintage foil ribbon.

painting on Ahimsa silk jersey 

dyepot with lac in it...
'Lac is a red dye extract from the scale insect Laccifer lacca which is found throughout India, south east Asia, Nepal, Burma, Bhutan and south China. It is found both in the wild and cultivated. The female lac insects invade host trees (mainly fig and acacia) and the insect secretes a resin that contains the red dye. When harvested, the resin is taken off the branches and is known as stick lac. The resin is also used to make shellac. The dye must be extracted from the resin before it can be used to colour cloth'..information from Maiwa 

there is more fabric in my fridge than food!  after mordanting the fabric to get it ready to receive dyes...I let it cure in my fridge for a period of a week or more. 

custom paints made with natural dyes and gum tragacanth

painted with natural dyes on bamboo fleece

'luminosa mariposa' ..painted with natural dyes (lac, quebracho and logwood) using hand drawn and hand cut butterfly stencils on Ahimsa silk jersey

vintage lace crocheted by my nana...dyed by me with pomegranate rinds

This collection started about a year ago when I started to collect fabrics such as wild silks, merino wool, organic cotton and vintage laces with the intention of making a collection with all naturally dyed and painted fabrics. Since then I have been putting it together bit by times standing over the dyepot stirring, at other times sitting at my sewing machine. Sometimes after hours of preparing and dyeing a piece of fabric it would come out as I had wished...and the feeling would be deeply rewarding. Other times, it would come out totally unexpected..which would alter the direction of any plans I may have had for that fabric. This process has meant that I have not been totally in control of the designs you will see...I would have a grand idea for a specific design on a certain fabric in a certain colour, and one botched dye job would change all of that! Though I must say there have also been some happy accidents. Many hours have gone into the colours you will see in this collection and I look forward to sharing with you the results of my labours spanning over this past year.