This is a very large bag!  I designed it specifically for going to the Farmer’s Market, but have been using it to carry things to my classroom as well.  It is made from burlap in tangerine and kiwi, and features hand-stitched wool felt design on the exterior (I adore those 70’s graphics).  I actually made it in honor of the 40th Earth Day, because I was remembering the field trip I took with my class for the very first Earth Day celebration.  We spent the day at a nature preserve, and I remember it being very lovely.  Farmer’s Market totes will be available for purchase shortly.

Meditation

April 2, 2010

Meditation III

More from the sketchbook.  I am using drawing as a form of mindfulness meditation, responding to breath and sound in the environment.  I begin with no direction, letting the hand guide the work, with no prompting from the mind.  This work could be the springboard for a more finished work in drawing or fiber later on.

prototype

March 11, 2010

I am always looking for a bag that really carries the things I need.  I become very frustrated when I have to dig through my bag for something.  I thought about this for a very long time, wondering why even very expensive bags are poorly designed for comfort, organization, and looks.  So, even though this canvas tote looks like it would just carry everything in a big jumble, the interior is actually designed with practicality and accessibility in mind.  So, here’s the run down:

Exterior is heavy canvas, with suede bottom (harvested from used leather/suede clothing).  Basting stitches in carpet thread remain to honor the process of constructing the piece. One side features a large, flat pocket perfect for magazines, files, papers, etc.  Leather loop on wide shoulder strap is for hanging your keys on (no more digging thorugh the bag for the keys!!!!)

Interior is indigo-dyed cotton from Mali (made by friends of mine).  There is a concealed zipper pocket along one side, nestled between the lining and the exterior of the bag, to hold wallets, checkbook, etc. in an easy to reach and safe way.  On the opposite side is an easy to reach pocket for cell phone and pen.  The interior also features 2 stretch pouches made from recycled tshirts to hold water bottles/ large travel mugs in place. The rest of the tote is free for sweaters, sketchbooks, lunch (I am working on a canvas lunch bag) etc etc.  I have been carrying my laptop in this tote very comfortably, using one of the stretch pouches for the power plug (although just yesterday I completed a design for a canvas and silk laptop tote, stay tuned).

All designs have an emphasis on style, usability, and sustainable materials.  I am having so much fun sketching and making patterns.

One more thing:  I am very interested in the extreme simplicity of the canvas as an exterior, while creating a world of deep color, surprise, and elegance in the interior.  Makes me think of living a very simple outward life, while cultivating the vast richness of the soul.

idea evolution

March 4, 2010

Silk, burlap, hemp, canvas, indigo tie-dye from Mali, and undyed linen.  Oh, and wool felts from old sweaters.

A new project is on the horizon.  A line of bags, designed with proportion and function in mind.  Re-thinking how we carry things.

Each design, one of a kind, lots of hand-stitching left in to honor the process.

I found great colors of cotton twill tape and carpet threads at an old upholstery shop downtown, and bought Japanese silk

quilting thread from a textile vendor at the Gem Show.

blue in progress

February 4, 2010

Experimenting with stitching on top of a piece of linen I dyed last week.  So far, I have only sketched in the compostion, and am beginning the underlayers of stitching.  I think I will work on building up surface with many layers of stitching on the colored ground, mirroring the technique I use in painting.  The patterns from the shibori give me some nice organic shapes to respond to while developing a final composition