Fabric Art and Story Telling
I am an artist, a writer, gardener and native plant enthusiast, public speaker, and environmental educator. Creating nature-inspired art from recycled textiles from my slipcover business and telling stories through writing, teaching, and through my story quilts, I strive to weave together lessons in sustainability and appreciation for the natural world.
Similar processes are utilized for both my textiles and text. In creating textile art, I start with piles of fabrics, colorized and stacked. Instead of sketching a plan, I form my ideas by cutting patterns out of muslin scraps. I lay the base cloth on the floor and start pulling pieces from the piles. I arrange the patterns, cutting and layering the themes on top of the canvas, pinning and stitching as I go. The zigzag and straight stitches of colorful threads become punctuation points to lead the viewer’s eye and thoughts. I allow the symbols to communicate a story.
For the text, I craft an essay much like I create fabric art. I start with putting words and thoughts to paper in no particular order. Bits and pieces, quotes, descriptions, and explanations, I get everything out and onto the paper, and then transcribe the words to the computer. The next day, I begin crafting the piece. I open a blank document and begin plucking out phrases and sentences from the pile. I copy and paste the words, rearranging order and flow, weaving the phrases together, tweaking and stitching the words until the piece is finished. I love that the same kind of approach works for all that I do. The process is efficient and streamlined. It works for me.