Archives for posts with tag: fiber art

The inspiration for the tapestry “Fellow Americans and Exotic Aliens” came from Bob Sober’s exhibition at the Imperial Center for Arts and Sciences in Rocky Mount, called Small Wonders: insects in focus.

His monumental photographs were awe inspiring in their beauty and dignity. Two adjectives that I would not normally apply to insects. One of the insects photographed, the yellow nose clown lantern fly has a sibling in the USA- the spotted lantern fly which is now the scourge of Virginia and has recently migrated into North Carolina too. These insects are known as exotic aliens.

Before my daughter and I became American citizens, we were designated as legal aliens. There seems to be similarities between the attitudes towards citizens who are called ‘aliens’ and ‘alien’ insects and plants. One of the reasons that exotic insect and plant aliens are regarded as pests is because they have no “natural enemy” in their new environments to keep their populations under control. Once established, some of the exotic aliens can overcome some of the native species.

The yellow nose clown lantern fly
Bob Sober composes his insect portraits from hundreds or even thousands of photographs stacked into a single digital image….then prints the composite images at a relatively monumental scale in comparison to the minute subject matter; some prints in this exhibition are more than 6′ tall…”

woven in two pieces, symetrical but not identical
the yellow nose clown lantern fly in the Garden Fence Gallery


Not as large as the monumental photographs of Bob Sober, but this yellow clown nose is still much larger than life.
And obviously would not survive being outside in winter.

Hello, February 2022

My latest embroideries are inspired by the Haitian art flags of dazzling colors and shining sequins.

Harmony from the Heart Sutra

My first piece was a mandala from the heart sutra and that led naturally to the heart for Valentine’s Day

“I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged into a woood, and I-

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

Robert Frost.

I thought the weaving would be over once I had woven the 16 tapestry pieces. Wrong! I have to edit to make the shapes fit and make sense. At least, make sense to me.

Before sewing the pieces together, I want the pieces to make sense individually and as a whole.

I don’t like the top part of the 6th tapestry piece

So I am reconstructing the 6th piece. Now I see other areas in tapestry I might reconstruct. I might want to improve or restore sections.

Would it have made sense to have planned this out in more detail?

Absolutely. The road not taken.

10 pieces completed
Starting the 11th tapestry piece

Last year I wrote about creating small, intimate tapestries. My last tapestry at the Tapestry Weavers South Exhibit was 6″ x 61/2.”

My latest tapestries are 12″ x 12″ ( double the size!) Each tapestry is one part of a much larger tapestry that will be 4′ x 4′.

This is quite a shift in scale from my previous tapestries. So what happened?

It is a direct response to the events that are playing out in 2020. Personal health problems; a pandemic; political turmoil.

Yet I am working from the same impulse as my previous tapestries.

This impulse is one that is described in Jane Kidd’s talk from Tapestry 2008, “To Practice in the Middle: A Craft/Art dialogue”

I refer to her description of the ‘reparative gesture’ which she believe is particularly applicable to tapestry.

” The concept of the ‘reparative gesture’ derives from psychoanalyst Melanie Klein and has been used in contemporary art discourse art theorist Jean Randolph who writes:

” The reparative gesture is altruistic, generous and synthetic. It does not cast out what is impure or ruined. It reconstructs, reinterprets, and illuminates the potential of the impure subject, object, idea or form. The reparative impulse attempts an integration of grief for the lost ideal with the desire to make good for injury done. Reparative action is the endeavor to restore. Rather than hiding traces of damage, it integrates them with grief of the lost ideal and the remaining qualities of value.”

My tapestry is “in pieces” and I am working to bring the pieces together to make a complete whole. But the pieces do not “match” each other- there are no perfect seams or edges, and each piece has very different yarns and colors, stripes and textures. They are all slightly different sizes. My goal is to combine the pieces, accept the differences and present an image that is integrated, beautiful in itself as itself, and whole.

The tapestry image of the day lily will not match the perfect proportions or colors of the day lily that blooms so beautifully in nature. However, my tapestry day lily is not ephemeral.

Lots of inspirational spinning ideas from “Intertwined” The Art of Handspun Yarn, Modern Patterns, and Creative Spinning by Lext Boeger.

We had our first Handspinning Class for Beginners, at Revolution Mill on Friday, February 8th.

Everyone, without exception, spun some gorgeous yarns with their own personal drop spindle. The drop spindles were made of old cd’s, a wooden dowel, rubber grommet and hook. Instructions about how to make your own drop spindle are from interweave press at:

“Intertwined” gives examples of how to knit, crochet and weave hats and scarves, sweaters, bags and -one of the easiest project and my personal favorite– shoelaces! 

Cathie is spinning with some Corriedale fibers. She is spinning in a clock-wise direction, and adding different lengths of colored fibers as she spins.

Josefina showing her felted geode from our felt class in January

Some of my plied yarn is spun from Merino fibers

And now for something completely different-

Very tasteful addition to a tree in Edinburgh

A different approach to a tree in Mussleburgh, complete with pom poms

Love the flowers on the tree trunk!

Yarn bombing in Edinburgh at the St. James’ Center and a slew of yarn bombs in Mussleburgh.

Thanks to Louisa and Marianne for the photos!


Yarn bombing in Wiesbaden, Germany.

Thank you Marianne, for this gorgeous photograph of a tree in Weisbaden, Germany. I think this would have to be a group effort as there is so much knitting, and over such a large area, beautifully done. An inspirational piece of art, that enlivens and brightens up the city street.



This is an  invite to everybody to send me any images they have of yarn bombing- and say if it’s something you have seen or done yourself! 

Despite having heard on very good authority that fiber artists need to look and work outside the box, expand in scale ( think monumental!) and explore constructions with new materials such as clay, glass and wood…

tapestry in normal light

I started a tiny tapestry from artwork measuring 5  1/2″  x 8 1/2″ weaving a tapestry at 5″ wide, using the same old soldiers-  wool, cotton, mohair, silk and wool blends. I gave myself a good talking to, reminding myself that I had to get with the program and explore new ways to construct textiles. Yet , despite all my admonitions, here I am working with the oldest and most traditional materials and techniques:-paint, paper, yarns and fibers.



The latest update on Focus: Fiber 2016 opening

It will be on February 12, 2016 at Kent State University Museum, Blum and Stager galleries. will be early evening with refreshments.

Focus : Fiber 2016 is a juried exhibition by the Textile Alliance at the Cleveland Museum of Art. The exhibition will be from February 12- July 3, 2016.

The juror was Jane Sauer,  a fabulous internationally renowned fiber artist .

golden boy full size

Golden Boy

fragonard girl

Fragonard girl


Lost on Fulford Road

What an honor to have three punch needle pieces selected for the show!



Reconquering Burgundy, resurrecting Charles the Bold

Cooking Without Limits

Food Photography & Recipes

Photography Art Plus

Photography, Animals, Flowers, Nature, Sky

Fibre art by Jean Ottosen

NC Alternative Crops and Organics

art in fibers and fabric

around the garden

art in fibers and fabric


art in fibers and fabric