Okay, you thought I gave up posting, right? Not exactly. I just took a sabbatical from blog posting. I have some things to share, so I hope you’ll stay tuned. I have been busy with a tiring job for the last few months and all my energy went to it. This blog post is about a trip I took last November and I am just getting to tell you about it now. Fortunately, with the support of my husband and family, I have reached a new chapter in my life now where I am working for myself doing sewing jobs for others, teaching and making jewelry. I hope this post has some value to you as I offer some destinations in Oregon to visit, some eye candy, and reflections from the trip.
Let’s go back in time for a minute….last Fall, I was fortunate to visit my mom in Oregon. While I was there, we visited Diane Ericson’s studio located in Ashland and took a class from her. What fun! She was an inspiration to free up the typical thought process when creating and take it in another direction. After a brief tour and some rifling through her beautiful art-to-wear garments, it was clear to me that I would be seeing clothing construction in a new way. Diane’s foundation in clothing construction and design allows her the freedom to manipulate fabric in new ways to construct unusual collars, cuff treatments, sleeve alterations, etc. To top it off, she specializes in surface design with paints to add more unique artistry and color to her creations.
The table was set up for us with sample fabrics provided different textures and colors to use with stencils. With Diane’s easy going approach, she gave clear suggestions and instructions of how to hold the sponge just right, how much paint to use and how to finesse the touch on the stencil to get the best look.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all, she shows another way to use the stencils…around buttonholes. If the stencil design is large enough, the button will not hide it. This technique is a placket made by joining two fabrics, sewing the seams and leaving enough room for a buttonhole and then continue sewing until the next buttonhole, etc.
It was great to see Diane’s use of various stencils with one garment. A simple turn of a stencil or using just part of a stencil design created great looks.
Above, using manila paper, Diane practiced the design on a smaller version of the garment to test placement and color.
Once the painting is over, there plenty of patterns, fabrics, stencils and inks/paints to purchase for experimentation at home. Samples are up all over the studio for inspiration.
I had to take a picture of this showing some different techniques of stitching, painting, layering of fabrics and stenciling. The button closure is interesting and creative–Diane style!
You can read more about this long Ventana Jacket pattern #327 here from a Pattern Review article in Threads magazine.
This double-sided coat was my favorite item because of the shape and pattern, the fabric and the techniques Diane chose to make it so special. I pulled the front open a bit when I took the picture so you could see the stenciling in the inside of the collar and down the front. It is a peek-a-boo feature visible when the collar rolls back or the jacket is worn unfastened.
This was a shirt featuring a paper airplanes stencil and fabric manipulation. Who can resist flying a little paper airplane? A little whimsy in your sewing brings about a smile.
Peeking at her website, Diane will be featured in the June/July 16′ issue of Vogue Pattern Magazine featuring Curves and Angles: Designing with Art Fabrics. You can read more about the article on her sight before getting to read the article in full. Hopefully, you can get your hands on a copy at a local fabric store, bookstore or online.
Diane’s style would be called ‘funky, or ‘edgy’ or ‘out there’. Her love for the tactile qualities of many fabrics is apparent in her work. It may not suit all, but I like the creative departure from what is often found in the fashion blog world. This is another reason why I love to sew; self expression is possible by wearing handmade garments. How cool is that? Aaaannnd, how about some surface design, fabric combinations, creative closures, and top stitching to name a few..? It truly was a treat to meet Diane and be in her presence to hear and see how her creative mind works. To learn more about more about the many sides of Diane, click here.
Thanks for scrolling through my pics. To read more about my other Oregon adventures, click here.