Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Gone stitching - Or, one cloth, many possibilities!

I am going to be stepping back from appearances on my blogs for a while. I mean, I'll still be posting, but just not so much and not so often. Just so's ya know!

My son, Eben, will be arriving for two weeks on the 22nd of March. YIPEE! - haven't seen him for 2 years!

Eben Ptolemy Bainbridge

Here he is , my baby, in his uniform. He studies full-time at college and works as a customer care assistant for a new branch of Sainsbury's supermarkets, in Cardiff. I like that my boys learn to pay their way in life! My father always said, "Freedom comes hand-in-hand with responsibility". He was so right! Eben has had alot of freedom - he left home at 14 years of ageand lived, studied and worked in the city alone for 2 years before going back to the UK for more of the same there - and turned out to be a very responsible human being. I guess that wouldn't work with every kid! I count my lucky stars :)

Anyway, shortly after he leaves, my design partner, Megan, is coming down from California for 3 weeks of intensive studio time [makes me laugh, 'coz I'm old enough to be her Mom too] We're going to be working to mesh and meld our ideas for a collection, dying, printing and painting cloth, and generally playing around with different techniques that focus on manipulating the surface of the cloth. So, the next few weeks are going to be super busy! But I am still here, and will still be dropping in and leaving comments at all of my favorite places :)

Last year, I bought several, meter-long remnants, of this soft jersey knit fabric, which I hauled out of the bottom of a seconds bin in San Jose. I love the deep reds, and the print is kind of Ikat-ish I guess. Well, it was cheap, about $10 for the whole lot. Most places here sell cloth by the kilo, 'coz most places in Costa Rica only sell seconded or remnant fabiric! You have what there is and you don't have more! Which works for my needs. This is nice fabric to work with, it's just that, who wants to wear a jersey knit in the tropics, right? So, yesterday, I set about starting to come up with alternative ways to make use of all of this fabric. Today, I'm going to show you some early-in-the-process ideas that I plan to develop further today. And, nevermind all the other sewing projects that I have underway already ;} I always say, you have to go with the inspiration when it touches you! Surprisingly, perhaps, I think that's what makes me a pretty productive person, inspite of all the day-to-day stuff that I have to do too, like cook, do dishes, manage a 7-year old, organise homework, etc, I still manage to get alot of creative stuff done. Last night, 3 guests arrived, for 3 days, doing field work, and Reinaldo flew to San Jose this morning, so I'm managing that too.

Blah Blah Blah!

Ok, back to the cloth part.... which is what you're really here for, right ;}

The cloth in question.

Cutting the cloth into narrow strips and stretching!

Weaving the strip. I also made the "counted cutholes" in the cotton (what is that called, anyway?)

Cutting the stretched strips into small rectangles, stitching these down, and trimming level.

The off cuts from the trim.

Using the off-cuts from the above trim to create a dotted surface. Everything has a use :)

Making the dots fill a space.

Very rapidly combining that idea with some very crude stitching.

How about combining that idea with a border of the original cloth?

Alternating couching.

A button flower.

Small sections, looped at one end, and then stitched down. This makes a wooly hooked-rug effect.

This is one of my favorites. Look at that gorgeous, tweedy, tonal effect! Very nizzzz!

Coiled. I see this has massive potential too.

Ok, gotta run now. Later this morning, I will be off on my bicycle, collecting Nilo from school and sharing this baby out amongst the villagers.

An 18 kilo squash to share. Reinaldo bought this in the next village yesterday for $7

Eliza gets the machete stuck in the squash and I end up having to do the job. Pure muscle, me! ;}

Taking half of the seeds out to plant. Who knows, we might just get lucky!

Reinaldo and I.

And just so's Eben isn't really pissed with me for showing you his recent photo, here's one of my sweetheart [husband] and I. Funny huh? I'm quite tall for a woman (5' 11') and Reinaldo is a [typically] small Costa Rican, and definate proof that the best things in life are worth waiting for and come in small packages. I just don't wear heals when we are out together ;} Imagine!

Bye! Have a great day people!


Anonymous said...

Good grief, you are amazing... are you superwoman?! You've done some brilliantly inventive things with that cloth. Enjoy your quality family time and studio time :-)

jude said...

you are making me dizzy.

neki desu said...

you clever,clever girl.

Jacky said...

I am so excited for you that Eben is coming to stay...we mums love having our boys home!
always so much in your posts (and your life). That jersey fabric is the most wonderful print and I am enjoying your experimenting.
Love the pic of you and Reinaldo... like Reinaldo I'm not tall (5 foot and 3/4 of an inch...at my height that 3/4 of an inch counts).
Enjoy your time with your family and your guests.

Jacky xox

Sandra said...

Oh, you must be very happy to have your son with you soon. It's a long long time, 2 years.
I love all your experiments with the jersy fabric. Especially the seventh picture.
Wishing you a great time with your lovely son and your friend.


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