INDIGO

this is our Synthetic Indigo Vat

this is our Synthetic Indigo Vat

This is our natural Indigo Vat

This is our natural Indigo Vat

What a remarkable 2 day workshop (November 16th and 17th 2013) this was…it was fascinating to me to be able to compare the 2 indigo vats….we did  zinc/lime vats and now I realize why Yoshiko Wada in the 5 day workshop I took from her in 1992, used synthetic Indigo….and indeed it seemed that the 4 women in my class were preferring to use the synthetic vat. The natural vat was beautiful with the high quality indigo we used from Maiwa…..what a treat!!!

these are my samples from the time I lived in Hawaii and kept an indigo vat for 7 years

these are my samples from the time I lived in Hawaii and kept an indigo vat for 7 years

doing shibori

doing shibori at the Tin Thimble

and more shibori

and more shibori……

I am sorry to say I neglected to take any photos of our dyeing process, but dye we did…..

undoing shibori

undoing shibori

 

undoing shibori after dyeing

undoing more shibori after dyeing

The joy of discovering an opti visor.....

The joy of discovering an opti visor for taking out shibori…..

undoing more shibori

undoing more shibori

And finally we get to see the fruits of our labors

shibori unfolded

shibori unfolded

I love to put non-traditional things into the indigo vat....wooden beads

I love to put non-traditional things into the indigo vat….wooden beads

and bone.....

and bone…..

some very beautiful shibori came out of these vats

some very beautiful shibori came out of these vats

lovely

lovely

Interesting samples

Interesting samples

more interesting samples

more interesting samples

 

pole wrapped organza

pole wrapped organza

chiffon scarf dyed in Fennel, then shibori kumo, then dyed in the natural vat....quite lovely!

chiffon scarf dyed in Fennel and some eco printing,  then shibori kumo, then dyed in the natural vat….quite lovely!

itajime shibori with carved blocks

itajime shibori with carved blocks….one of my personal favorite techniques

a lovely stitched design

a lovely stitched design

it was quite a wonderful experience, and I’d like to thank these 4 women for being so attentive and focused!…..our day ended with this remarkable gift from the Universe

sky show at the closing of class....

sky show at the closing of class….

 

Namaste,

m.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Whirlwindy Times Part 2

I taught 2 workshops in the month of October, in 2 different states other than my own….hence the name for these blogs….

Pacific Northwest Art School  “Alternate Approach to Nuno Felting” October 23-26th 2013

Beach finds....

Beach finds….

The day before my class started I took a walk on my favorite little beach which is accessed by a trail from a small park….I love this little snippet of beach….and I always somehow manage to get there when the tide is low….it delights me to no end to search thru the flotsam and jetsam that rolls in with the tide and to look at Nature’s inspirational palette…this find is simply a rock, a broken shell (for texture of course), a reed with moss on it and a feather…so simple…but it gave me great pleasure to look at it during my stay on Whidbey….

natures palette

nature’s palette

The Fabulous workroom at PNWAS

The Fabulous workroom at PNWAS

The class begins…

works in progress....

works in progress….

It’s always so fascinating how different the work is that begins to emerge

work in progress....

work in progress….

adding bits of color in the beginning to be over dyed later…

work in progress....

work in progress….

having a 4 day class enabled us to pay closer attention to detail

works in progress

works in progress

engaging in the “what happens if…” process

finished pieces begin to emerge on the 4th day

finished pieces begin to emerge on the 4th day

 

and emerge they did like butterflies from their cocoons….

textured gifts from the dye pots

textured gifts from the dye pots

amazing color combinations

amazing color combinations

 

and amazing shibori

and amazing shibori

 

more amazing shibori

more amazing shibori

fascinating combinations

fascinating combinations

more fascinating combinations

more fascinating combinations

and Magic Moments

and Magic Moments

more magic moments

more magic moments

sublime....

sublime….

It was a huge gift to spend 4 days with these remarkable women, Thank you all so much for taking my class and sharing your lovely energy.

Namaste,

m.

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Whirlwindy Times

Virginia City, Nevada…… Alternate approach to Nuno Felting  Workshop October 11th, 12th, & 13th 2013

St Mary's Retreat Center

St Mary’s Retreat Center

This is the lovely center where we stayed while we had our 2 1/2 day Nuno Felting “retreat/workshop”

The Entry is on the middle floor with the workroom up one flight of stairs and the kitchen down one flight of stairs

The Entry is on the middle floor with the workroom up one flight of stairs and the kitchen down one flight of stairs

a remarkable place to be sure built in the 1800’s…..we literally had the whole place to ourselves all weekend…..

This is the incredible Studio Space.....

This is the incredible Studio Space…

one half of it , and here is the other half

the other half of the studio space

the other half of the studio space

We had the best time, 12 really lovely women….I felt so incredibly blessed to have all of you there

some of the finished work

some of the finished work

some remarkable things were created

some remarkable things were created

 

some magical color combinations happened in the dye pots

some magical color combinations happened in the dye pots

 

more magical color

more magical color

 

fabulous shibori

fabulous shibori

more fabulous shibori

more fabulous shibori

and more fabulous shibori and texture

and more fabulous shibori and texture

it is amazing what happens in the dyepots!

it is amazing what happens in the dye pots!

I never ceased to be really amazed....

I never ceased to be really amazed….

by what happens in each and every dye pot

by what happens in each and every dye pot

We had a fabulous time, 2 1/2 days is too short to really delve into the depths of these processes….so many variables…..so little time…..big sigh…..I’d like to say Thank You to all the Wonderful Women who took this workshop and made this retreat a rousing success……

Namaste,

m.

 

 

 

 

 

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Magical Thinking

I found these photos the other day while perusing my various file folders of photos….(ever notice how time really escapes when you get caught up in looking and managing pictures of your life?!!!) phew….it’s hard not to be overwhelmed by the process of it all…(but, happy to say I will not go into overwhelm mode…) My sister and I were talking this morning how easy it is to become distracted when you set out to do a specific task….My Yoga teacher has talked this week how Autumn (with her winds and leaves falling) brings such Vatta energy…(one of the 3 Auyervedic body types) this particular type pertains to “airy” and I made the connection that we are in the current sign of Libra which is an air sign…(both my moon and rising signs are in Libra) so there is a lot of airiness happening to me right now…….. the key is to ground down into the earth….(the way I do that is by wrapping my head and making a “to do” list)…..(so where was I ?)….oh yes…..photos

Magical Thinking....Hand-dyed shibori Fabrics with magazine "W" photo

Magical Thinking….Hand-dyed shibori Fabrics with magazine “W” photo

My Hairdresser gave me this “W” magazine and in it was a whole photo shoot called “Magical Thinking”….this is the opening photo….it really intrigued me on so many levels….. (something about that big moth on her lips)……..The idea that we can create magical thinking by just making a shift in our perception of both situations and the things that surround us….it requires a suspension of judgmental thinking…..on all levels….1 abo testThis is my husband and I (last year) dressed in costumes that I made back in the 90’s…..this is my inner self manifested to the outside….I am most comfortable when I am in the middle of being exactly who I am….(as we all are)….(and bless my husband for going along with the ride….)

I try to keep reminding myself when life seems so chaotic, (I am in the middle of vast amounts of “production” for the Fashion Designer I collaborate with) that to just stop and be still, breathe deeply, and plant your feet firmly on the ground….. (even if your head is in the clouds)…..is truly conducive to “Magical Thinking”…..

 

When I walked the dog the other day (our evening walk) I saw that the sun was starting to put on it’s daily show here at Asiloverde….the canopy catches the light just so… I ran back into the house and grabbed the camera……

this canopy of Oaks is 80 feet tall....catching the last rays of sun

this canopy of Oaks is 80 feet tall….catching the last rays of sun

This as we walked down the driveway at the beginning of our walk…..

canopy over driveway

canopy over driveway

and this

Canopy at sunset

Canopy at sunset

and this….as we returned from our walk when the sun was lower….

I call this 100 foot Ponderosa Pine the "guardian" of Asiloverde

I call this 100 foot Ponderosa Pine the “guardian” of Asiloverde

and finally back to the front door, the sun had even more intensity …..

the neighboring pines catching the last rays of sun....

the neighboring pines catching the last rays of sun….

magical thinking….easy to do here at Asiloverde…..

Our sign....Asiloverde....."sanctuary of the green"

Our sign….Asiloverde…..”sanctuary of the green”

Namaste,

m.

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Autumn Eqinox

My first experiment botanically printing on a silk and wool nuno felt cloth

My first experiment botanically printing on a silk and wool nuno felt cloth

I thought this was a wonderful photo to start a conversation about the Autumn Equinox……. which is today….it is a time for “Expansion, Freedom and Commitment” so says the Monthly Forecast I read from Lena Stevens www.thepowerpath.com  She says to “take some time to ritualize change” …..So I am blogging on this very powerful day to ritualize my change of intention, of heart, and letting go of fear and doubt……I have been reading Lena’s forecasts faithfully every month for the last 5 years. (she posts them on her website at the beginning of each month) I like to think of them as roadmaps for the soul thru these remarkable and chaotic times….I feel like they have been a gift.

This photo is the first really big (well for me) nuno felt fabric I did at the end of March 2013 after taking the lovely Marilou Moschetti’s workshop in early spring at The Tin Thimble shop www.thetinthimble.com where I learned a new no roll technique of felting. What a huge gift it was for me….

detail of botanically printed cloth

detail of botanically printed cloth

This process has intrigued me from the beginning and so I went on take a number of workshops this year all at The Tin Thimble….In May I took a workshop from India Flint that was a revelation on many levels……she suggested using milk on cottons as a mordant because of it’s simplicity of use….

This is my first experiment with cotton and milk

This is my first experiment with cotton and milk

This is a recycled cotton sweater soaked in milk…..unfortunately what I found was that the milk (being an animal fat?) has a tendency to be odoriferous (smell really bad) after the printing process….and difficult to clean out of the fibers….so now the sweater does not look quite this vibrant after repeated washings and needless to say, I love soy milk for this process….(I also used 1% fat milk and I think whole milk is better)…..experimentation, you gotta love it!!!

back side of sweater

back side of sweater

cottons take the plant dyes so differently than do the silks and wools and I really love them for it!

detail of front

detail of front

 

these definitely feel like Fall to me

Detail of Back

Detail of Back

 

So then I started thinking about how to really make this my own….(I mean really, how many variations of eucalyptus can you do? How can you make it different than just orange leaves on white silk?)…..I began to look around my studio which abounds with hand dyed fabrics…..

Botanically printed silk satin fabric

Botanically printed silk satin fabric

What I loved about this was how the orange shifted to a copper thru the pale grey….

Botanically printed silk satin

Botanically printed silk satin

 

I then took these fabrics and created a shawl to go with the dress (shown below) I created from the big silk and wool fabric (shown above)

Botanically printed sculptural wool dress

Botanically printed sculptural wool dress

and shawl that goes with it….I like the idea of juxtaposing a sculptural form with its antithesis, something very soft and flowing

Silver and Persimmon Pieced Shawl Botanically printed silk satin with vintage Obi and silk organza ruffle

Silver and Persimmon Pieced Shawl Botanically printed silk satin with vintage Obi and silk organza ruffle

Silver and Persimmon Botanically printed pieced shawl

Silver and Persimmon Botanically printed pieced shawl

 

And there you have it….just a few of the things I did early this year before May…..I am pleased to be back here at the blog post, see you next week…….. Happy Autumn!

 

 

 

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Shifting Seasons

My driveway on Sesame Street

Asiloverde means “Sanctuary of the Green”…Welcome….

I am beginning again, after not blogging for a year and 9 months….I have finally let go of my doubts and fears, and have decided it’s time for me to embrace the new technology and move forward with grace….I have decided to name my blog “Intuitive Interplay”…..which is a fragment of a line from my Artist’s statement….” My work strives to bring together the elements of color, design, elegance and simplicity of form. It manifests itself thru an intuitive interplay between my heart and my hands. The process is the journey….the outcome, the tangible evidence of having been there….”

And so I begin….in this time of shifting seasons….the light has begun to change and the air feels a bit cooler….My heart feels a lot lighter than it did last year….(it was my “Dragon” year, and I created these huge expectations that it would somehow magically manifest all sorts of amazing realities….which in fact it did not….except to teach me once again about expectations….and all the “stuff” that goes along with them….Now that I have found the humor in that….. I feel pleased to say I can move forward with grace….(at least as much as I can muster) in these strange times…..and so here are my surroundings….my studio space nestled into this sanctuary of the green

My 80 foot Canopy of Oaksthis is the 80 foot oak canopy that surrounds this lovely place where I live and work. I am quite simply in full gratitude for it….

works in progress

works in progress

I am also in full gratitude for all of you who signed up for my 2 upcoming workshops in October. I am very excited about them and plan to have a wonderful time. We will be in full experimentation mode for both classes, discovering new ways to put silk and wool together. I am always excited about the incredible possibilities this simple process presents….so be prepared to be inspired, come with your “what if” questions and we will have a fabulous time exploring the process….

new work, Black/White shibori nuno felted shawl

new work, Black/White shibori nuno felted shawl with organza ruffles

I have been doing a lot of experimenting this year with a number of things, among them many variations of “Botanical Printing” as offered forth by India Flint’s Eco printing book….My thought is always “how can I make this my own” ?…..what can I do differently….??? It’s been a delightful challenge to say the least….( I fancy myself a bit of a Zen Wabi Sabi Scientist)……

What happen if you print on an old Rabbit Fur Collar?

What happens if you print on an old Rabbit Fur Collar? Oak leaves and Eucalyptus.

Once I figure out how to download the pictures from my I-pad, I will have more of my experimental works in progress to share….(and I ask that if you would like to use my imagery…. PLEASE be respectful and ask my permission first)

Thank you for reading….I will see you in a few days…It is my intent to blog here at least once a week but perhaps,…. maybe….(gasp)….. twice a week……

Namaste,

m.

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“An Alternative Approach to Nuno Felting: No Rolling Required”

 

2 1/2 Day Workshop

 October 11, 12, and 13th 2013 in Virginia City, Nevada at the St. Mary’s Retreat Center.

Learn to create new fabric using wet felting techniques fusing fine silk and Merino wool. The new “Nuno” felt fabric will be prepared for over-dyeing, using Shibori wrapping methods. Thermal shaping techniques extend the possibilities for an art-to-wear  project or other creative use in wall art or home decor. Melissa creates fabrics for avent-garde designer Catherine Bacon, who has notable collectors around the country.

For registration information contact: Marilou Moschetti at felting07@gmail.com or http://www.mariloumoschetti.com/ or Flo Hoylman flohoy@gmail.com.

Registration is limited to 12 participants. First come first served. Complete supply and equipment list will be sent once registration fees are received. Registration form here: Melissa Arnold Reg Form2

Deadline to register is September 10, 2013. Fees include housing at the retreat center. Fees: $325 for Guild members – SDA, SAQA, CNCH, CCTA, RAF, weaving, knitting guilds. $350 all other registrants. If you wish to charge your registration fee, telephone Marilou @ 831. 688. 2696. CLASS IS FULL, thank you for your interest.

 

 4 Day Workshop

The Dates for the Pacific Northwest Art School (PNWAS) are October 23rd – 26th signup info is on their website www.pacificnorthwestartschool.com/ CLASS IS FULL, thank you for your interest.

In this 4 day workshop we will learn to approach the art of silk and wool lamination from the perspective of a Textile Designer. Whether we create a sample or a finished scarf, we will always be asking “How can I create an interesting and fabulous fabric?

You will learn a simple no-roll technique of silk and wool lamination that enables you to be in direct contact with the wool and silk. Once we learn the basic technique, we will continue to explore the many possibilities of silk and wool combinations as well as of dyeing and thermal shaping with shibori over-dye techniques.

Some Nuno Felting experience is helpful but not required, beginners are welcome, as is a willingness to explore and experiment.

Melissa has spent the last 10 years as a Professional Textile Designer, collaborating with Fashion Designer Catherine Bacon.

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Guest Designer in a Fashion Show for the Haute Couture Societe’

I have been invited to be a Guest Designer in a Fashion Show for the Haute Couture Societe’. Join me on:

April 20, 2013
Haute Couture Société of Stockton presents 43rd annual fashion show,
Sew America

Lexington Plaza Waterfront Hotel
110 W. Fremont Street
Stockton

The garments for this show are created by members and invited guest designers.

Proceeds fund scholarships in apparel design and fashion merchandising.

Vendors will open at 9:30 A.M.; fashion show at 11:30 A.M. with luncheon following; raffle & silent auction at 1:15 P.M.  Special display of Quilts of Honor.

For tickets, send checks (@ $45.00 each to Haute Couture) to Patty Morais, 1836 Ramona, Stockton, CA  95204. For information, call (209) 477-6496 or (209) 466-9840 or email    mbehrens64@gmail.com

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Textile Marketplace Flyer

Textile Society of America Biennial Symposium

If you are in the Washington D.C. area, please stop by and see me at the Textile Marketplace. I was very surprised to see that one of my pieces featured on the flyer.
What a lovely gift!!!

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Textile Marketplace

Join us for a special Textile Marketplace during the Textile Society of America’s 13th Biennial Symposium, September 20-22 at the Washington Court Hotel in Washington, DC. The Marketplace will feature wearable art, textiles, books, yarn, fabric, and other textile related merchandise available for purchase. Don’t miss this opportunity to buy one-of-a-kind items from around the world…the perfect start to your holiday shopping!
 
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