Batik Napkins

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In most of my work, I use shibori techniques such as binding, stitching, folding or compressing the fabric to add pattern and texture. I like the unplanned “happy accidents” and organic textures that are created through the tie-dye techniques, but I had been wanting to try a different resist method that had a bit more control. Batik, or wax resist, is created by applying hot wax on a fabric that is then dyed. The areas covered in wax resist the dye and remain the original color. Batiks can be very elaborate with repeated applications of wax and dye to create more complex and colorful designs. I decided to experiment with one color at first, using brushes and found objects to create a design.

 

I liked the ability to control the design/pattern and still have a hand-dyed look but I wanted to create some napkins with a bit more depth and color so I made a batch of overdyed napkins. The napkins below went through two runs of wax and dye application. On the left is the first wax application, on the right the second.

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I have always like the “3-D” look of off-register screenprints and thought it would be a fun optical illusion pattern to create with wax resist.

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I was pleased with the how the overlap of wax and dye turned out – I think more multicolored batiks are in the works! Check out more of my hand-dyed home goods on the Nido website.

Improv Work

I thought I would share some photos of a few improvised patchwork pieces I made in November. I created these out of the scraps of my hand dyed fabric. I aim for near perfection when I creating the patchwork pillows I have on my shop, so it was fun to improvise the design while sewing the pieces together.

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I enjoyed it so much decided created a special edition pillow with an improvised patchwork front!

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The pillow seen above is currently at the Mass gallery store and you can check it out at their next opening on January 23!

Pillows!

A few years ago I started dyeing fabric and making patchwork pillows as gifts for my family and friends (and myself). I came across photos of some of the pillows I created in 2011 and since I’m process of creating an online store for my current pillows, I thought I would share some of my earlier work!

Drew’s extra-wacky bolster

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Marie’s huge n’ hexagonal bolster

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Kelly’s diamond cushion

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I’ve been spending time this summer experimenting with dye and creating some new patchwork pillows. Here are two sides of one pillow I hand-dyed and made this July. Stay tuned for more updates!

Red chair redo!

It’s been over a year since I updated this here blog but I thought, no time like the new year to pick up where I left off! Plenty has occurred since my last post (October 25, 2012 – yikes!) but one of the highlights, in terms of projects, was completing my first upholstery class. I wanted to take an upholstery class for some time but never managed to sign up in time. Plus, it required having something to upholster, which I hadn’t found (or looked for) yet. Well, once we “inherited” this institutional looking chair I knew I had found my guinea pig. I took a four week course through Austin Upholstery Studio where I managed to transform this:

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into this!

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Upholstery is definitely more manually intensive than I had imagined…and I didn’t even have any springs to re-tie! I felt like I cheated a little since my chair was mostly foam and required mainly a new cover and no major structural rebuilding. I later made a couple pillows for the chair:

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Here’s a closer shot of the pillows where you can see a bit more of the fabric detail:

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I plan to take another class once I come across the right neglected little gem…and I’ll keep ya posted!

I Love Oranges

This past weekend we made the trek to Houston to visit friends and go to the contemporary art fair but most importantly, we went to visit the Orange Show Monument! I had heard of this place before and caught glimpse of it in photos I had seen online but I really want to experience it firsthand. The Orange Show Monument is a kooky architectural maze that was handmade by Houston postman Jeff McKissack over the course of 20 years. I expected an amusement ride at every turn. And a bowl of oranges. You should go!

Cater-pillow!

I recently came back from Arizona, where I was helping my sister and brother-in-law with their new born babe (aka my niece!). Lucia (the babe) is the first grandchild and we are all tickled to pieces. I was so excited to meet her, I made her a pillow! (She’ll grow into it):

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I really enjoyed making this pillow. Let me know if you have a small child (or adult) that needs a cuddly creature on their bed and I’ll get on it!

Back Where I Came From

I have been back in Austin for 23 days and somehow I’ve already managed to come to the washateria twice. One perk of not having a job is that I’m able to do laundry during the day and avoid the slightly depressing night time at the laundromat. Plus they got wee-fee!  I happened to bring my iPod and wanted to continue watching the documentary about feral cats living in Roman ruins that Marie posted on a certain social networking site so I got on the youtube. I realized the last search I had done was in Argentina when my cousin asked me to look up “Mr. Trololo”. (We were trying to think of all the viral videos we knew of so we could compare what was popular in Argentina vs. the US). Here is Mr. Trololo:

Has anybody seen this before? I just re-watched the video and was cracking up in the laundromat. Why didn’t anybody show me?? I gotta fold some sheets now.

Oh My Humahuaca!

I have already left Salta but I wanted to share some photos from my excursion through the Quebrada de Humahuaca to the town of Humahuaca and back. It was amazing! Along the way, we stopped in the towns of Purmamarca, Tilcara and Uquia. Here are some sights from that day:

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I’m in Córdoba now, visiting and staying with family which is really nice but it has definitely altered the pace of my excursions (more eating, less walking). Although yesterday I went on a long walk with my cousins through the colonial center of Córdoba. We visited many beautiful museums and churches but I forgot to take photos of them with my iPod (which is how I’ve been updating this blog). I remembered while we were resting outside the Museo Superior de Bellas Artes Evita (formerly called Palacio Ferreyra), where we made friends with one of the museum’s many feral cat. Here he is:

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We named him Gato Ferreyra. Cutie, huh?