Wednesday, September 30, 2009

design it yourself

Since Self promotion is not in her genes, or so she says, a little promo for the lovely Cal Patch and her new book.

She has a new book Design-it-yourself Clothes that just came out. if you do not know about it go and visit her site to learn more and order one for yourself.

and seriously the illustrations look so cool:)

urban threads

One of the artists that I mentioned yesterday needed a little more attention to her work so I thought I would feature her today, artist Marie H. Elcin.
Marie creates really courageous heavily embroidered drawings mostly of city scape's. Her technique of embroidery illustrates playgrounds, industrial areas, and urban neighborhoods. Something I have often thought of doing since my studio is in a very industrial area.

Marie manages to illustrate these areas without abandoning a sense of autobiography and narrative.

Marie's statement says:
I stitch everywhere: on the train, on my lunch break, in front of the TV, even during the sermon at church. The portability of embroidery makes it possible for my art to be an integral part of my everyday life. I do not have to save my ideas for when I have time to be in the studio. The rhythm of stitching is meditative and calming. Each stitch you see is evidence of my hand and of my time, a precious commodity in this frantic age of technology. As a traditionally female occupation, embroidery strengthens my connection to my maternal ancestors. However, my use of embroidery for fine art challenges the preconceptions associated with the materials and techniques.

Her technique seems to blend with qualities of quilting. My sense is that these are smaller pieces but I would love to see a really large one.

She also has created some very cool birds eye views of the urban development. See more here.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Sorry I was M.I.A for a few days. My folks were in town and I thought I would get to the computer but did not.
We had a nice visit. They are not the biggest fans of NY, so it is always a little bit of struggle, what not every one adores the noise, crowds, and dirt, but none the less it is always good to see them. We went to the cloisters and saw some very amazing wood carvings and tapestry's. The famous unicorn tapestries are amazing.

It is a bit of a trek from the city but definitely worth checking out if you live here... and the cloister gardens are gorgeous.

I am also starting to get some submissions pouring in for connective thread and it is so fun. I love seeing what folks submit and am so glad I asked for a little statement to give me some more insight into their work. Make sure to submit your awesome work too.

OK, no more avoiding my work with the computer back to the needle and thread!

network of thread.

Do you know about the very cool site and group the Hand Embroidery Network? A network of awesome and talented embroidery folk. It is like the perfect club, ha ha.
But seriously they have online exhibits, listings, discussion forums, a newsletter and in general seem like a great resource for those of us who are thread and needle obsessed. Their current exhibition features work that includes Living Organisms and has some pretty fabulous work. Including the hilarious above image by Sarah Whittle , as a new yorker bedbugs are your biggest fear!

Also included are the very lovely layered, collaged, and almost sculptural work of artists Lesley Kaye, above, and Jeana Marie Blackert, below.

Some more bugs and little creatures... by Marie Elcin-

and Grace Lister-

and a super lovely work by Armelle Deforge-

See the entire exhibition here.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

clean stitches.

I saw this amazing piece over at a the fabulous Mr Xstitch and was just blown away by it. This super gorgeous work was made by Gretchen over at june at noon. The detail of this gorgeous doll house embroidery is simply inspiring.

Or the detail of this very cool embroidery Gretchen made for her hubby as a gift. I am sure he love it.

an homage to Frank Lloyd Wright:

Gretchen's clean detailed stitches show you how patience and time really pays off in making a gorgeous work. Her work has bubbled up tones of new ideas in my head, especially the doll house piece.

See more of her work here and her blog here. She also makes some super cool cup cozies!

Embroidery workshop in October!

I am teaching a 2 hour Intro to Embroidery Workshop at the the fabulous SPACECRAFT in Williamsburg Brooklyn.
If you are around please stop by to learn the basics of embroidery and create a simple one of a kind sampler.

October 10, 1:30-3:30pm
$20- bring your own supplies or purchase before class.
Contact or 718.599.2718 to sign up.
Details are as follows:

In this Introduction to Embroidery workshop each student will begin an original custom sampler. Rather than following a pattern each student will design their sampler with a water soluble marker, using either their own unique handwriting or provided stencils. .
We will learn the most basic skills of preparing the fabric, using the hoop, and threading the needle to finishing the project for final display. 5 traditional embroidery stitches will be taught: the split stitch, stem stitch, back stitch, satin stitch, and the ever mysterious french knot. With the skills learned you will be able to continue making beautiful pieces of art or simply embellish items of your own. So bring your creativity and lets get stitching!

Students are encouraged to work with a found, inherited, or vintage linen as their base. If you choose to do so make sure that the linen is either 100% cotton or linen and washed. Students can also work with a raw piece of fabric.
Feel free to bring stencils and quotes that you would like to include in your sampler.

Supplies needed:
a variety of embroidery needles
100% cotton embroidery cloth- amount and color depends upon individual design.
water soluble marker
embroidery hoop
Found linen or 100% cotton/ linen fabric. Size is up to the students decision.


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

bodies and thread.

A friend just let me know about the very cool work of fellow NY artist Megan Canning . He kindly forwarded her the info about Collective Thread the show I am curating and I hope she submits.

Megan's work actually reminds me in some ways for my friend Megan's work. Both of them approaching their art practice by exploring the human body, internal systems, and organs as metaphor for a realm of the human experience.

Of course I am drawn to Megan's fiber work-

But she also makes super cool installations-

Her statement says:
Hand sewing and traditional embroidery techniques have gradually become a key element in the work, for both visual and conceptual reasons. Sewing literally pierces the 'skin' of the work, and also becomes a metaphor for the body - the embroidery results in an orderly, clean surface and a messy, chaotic underbelly, just like the skin is a calm exterior that masks the complex inner workings of the human body.

Through my work, I am attempting to illuminate what is usually hidden beneath the surface – the physical interior of our human bodies and the memories stored within.

Love it!

The Illustrator project.

Check out the very cool project that I am a part of started by the newlywed team of the awesome artist Kim Hennessey and her industrial designer hubby Nick.
The Illustrator Project is a very cool new site to find unique and cool artists to consider for illustrator jobs.

I know many of these very talented folks so make sure to flip though the very awesome work shown.

A write up at stated:
The Illustrator Project is a collective of emerging and established illustrators, artists and designers for hire. The images these people make are delicious.

I love being delicious- check my page out here.

Monday, September 21, 2009

historically inaccurate.

I was forwarded the work if artist Richard Saja's blog Historically Inaccurate and found his work to be very interesting.

Richard embroiders onto historically printed found images and fabrics to create comments on history and society. In a weird way his work reminds me of the clothing work of Yinka Shonibare who just had a show at the Brooklyn Museum. They both manipulate traditional fabrics and ideas to comment on current situations and the legacy of history.

He also created a super gorgeous chandelier like mobile of what I think are stuffed pigs. I love it.

Makes me think about how I can incorporate already existing patterns of fabric into my work?

See more work here.


happily working away on the studio.
very happily enjoying the gorgeous fall weather- so far fall in NY has been amazing!!
Very excited to see this awesome installation:

Lisa Kellner at the Brooklyn Arts Council.

See my past post on Lisa here.

And VERY excited and happy to be teaching with Rush Teens this fall as part of the Rush Philanthropic Teacing team. I am always glad to put my teaching hat on.

I also have a one day embroidery workshop coming up at Spacecraft in Williamsburg. More details soon.

Friday, September 18, 2009

at work in the studio...

I have been busy making the above piece, working to get it done for a show in November. It is actually coming along quite nice. I have questioned a lot of the color choices and hope that in the end they are right. You can never really know until it is finished.

Feeling a need to move along on this as I have a ton of new ideas to get started on... just a matter of finding the time and finishing up ideas I have already committed too.
Actually looking at this picture this piece has already changed a ton since yesterday... but today no progress will be made I have an appt. and then some computer time spent on 2 applications. Woo-hoo.

traces of fabric...

I am enthralled by the work of artist Karen Savage- who mostly works with the simple process of the photogram. In a recent press release this was stated:
The starkness of black --the cool of white --and the translucent grays make the photogram sublime. It's one of the most compelling and beautiful in the world of contemporary art and photography. Karen Savage is a master of metaphorical poetry and aggressive in the execution of this medium.

I have always been a fan of the photogram from the beginning of my photo days in high school, I have done a number of photograms and cyanotypes myself of crochet doilies, old dresses, and my most ambitious one was a cyanotype of my wedding dress. Something about the floating nostalgic object is so powerful. So you can see why I love Karen's work.

In one series Marriage lessons- Karen explores the social constructs of marriage. In her series Seven Sacraments she explores femininity and the experience and tradition of being feminine through ladies objects.

Her current show at Packer Gallery, Growing up, uses found old children's clothing to explore childhood and loss.
Children's dresses are grounded in culture, garments which symbolize innocence, promise, optimism, and hope for the future; especially a cherished christening dress, representing a state of grace, milestone, and a ritualistic event. These translucent and empty dresses express loss and growth.

My favorite work of hers does not want to drag and drop so I highly encourage a visit over to her galleries website to see more if her work. Look at these gorgeous photograms of linens.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Frou, Frou...

my work in the window, I love seeing it draped and vertical. a nice change.

Check out the set of pictures that show my work installed at Frou Frou as part of a show curated by Camilla of Made by Milla.

my work with the work of Karen Ruane and Cathy Cullis

Frou Frou is a very cool and fun looking store that is exhibiting work as part of the Weston-Super Mare arts festival. The install looks fun and I so wish I could stop by and see all the other work from the many other talented artists in the show.

my work with Karen Ruane

Artists include:

See the entire set of all the work here.

simple and good.

, originally uploaded by Baie..

I was recently finally going through my flickr mail and fell upon the lovely work of Baie. What originally drew me in was her lovely and emotional photographs and then to my delight I found her simple and humorous cross stitch and embroidery work. Often the work is quoting writers.

As we know we all need to sometime say this:

and oh it can feel so good.

I really love the sweet sentiment of this one...

, originally uploaded by Baie..

I love finding work that reminds us that simple is good enough. As artists it is easy to get caught up in thinking to much and trying to hard. It is nice to be reminded that simple works can be just as powerful as complicated ones.

Here is a sample of her very lovely photographs- they seem to have a touch of nostalgia in them that I love.

See more here.