Friday, November 2, 2012

In October I was asked to make a dress that would qualify as a "Trash Fashion" piece. I made a Flamenco dress from discarded Washington State Lottery tickets and Chinese Joss paper. The tickets came from our local Lottery trash bag, the Joss paper was from a wedding. The dress itself was made from leftover fabric from an event, window screening and the recycled paper bits. Photos by Jeff Dunnicliff. The model/singer is Azula. She sang a beautiful Fado piece about prosperity. The dress was a prayer for the future.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Burlesque and Moisture Fest!

In Seattle we have rain. We also have The Moisture Fest. I usually build a costume or 2 for one of the performers I work with. Last year I built 2 for Janet McAlpin aka. Mme. X. The first was an umbrella built into a bustier. The challenge was the rigging to keep it open and full circle around her little waist yet keep it light enough to stay on. The second costume was part of the FLIGHT theme. I designed and built a bustier/fringe skirt with working propellers for lift off! Mme. X could turn them off and on at will. Her top hat was handmade from merino wool and a borrowed top hat block. Both of these costumes required "costume engineering" which is one of my favorite things! My thanks to Michelle Bates and John Comicello for live stage photos.

Master Clowns in Black, White and Red

I have worked with David Godsey and Janet McAlpin for over 20 years. They are Master Clowns who have studied in the U.S. and in Europe. Janet asked me to design and build these costumes based on some ideas in a book from the 1800's on European Clowns. We wanted the classic black, white and red. The costumes are handpainted to get the effect we wanted. Their show is very physical and the costumes were built to take a lot of stress. David's costume was built with a trapese rigged to his body. The "butt flap" held Janet's weight. I would work with these two any time. I love their ideas and their joy. Photo credits to Michelle Bates and John Comicello. Photos taken during Moisture Fest, Seattle.

Laminated Felt Scarves

I have been spending the last year making felt items for a gallery in Taos. Cisneros Arts shows craft items ( mostly fiber and ceramics ). It is located in The Overland Ranch on the main road. Beautiful setting and I am glad to be there. The scarves in this posting are all hand dyes wools laid on black silk chiffon. They are rolled to bond silk to wool and then felted to make a whole cloth. Very fun to make and wear.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Garden Gazebo

Sometimes I get to make objects other than costumes. This is a gazebo project I was asked to make a canopy for. The structure existed when the owners bought the home. I made a pattern, dyed fabric ( nylon tent type fabric and canvas ) and installed the new covering. The owners were adding curtains and more metal decorations around the bottom strip. It ended up being a wonderful place to sleep in the summer.

Doc's Funeral

Doc Eastly was a big animal vet. He had a farm with BIG horses. Doc was a beloved member of the community  and every Christmas he hooked up the horses to a BIG wagon and drove it full of kids and bells and hot cider. When he died I was asked to build a horse for the memorial, for the alter and final goodby. We filled the horse's belly with stories, prayers, last words before the family set the horse on fire to a 21 gun salute. Beautiful, sad and wonderful.

Zen Tales

I built Zen Tales for The UMO Ensemble. I love mask work and this was a chance to do animals and hand dyed linen clothing. The stories were all parables that were geared for children. I loved the clown aspect, the simplicity and the reaction of the kids.