just thinking about the happy connections that have spread
a bit like mycelium
over the past quarter century
i'd like to acknowledge Kay Lawrence
who, while sitting dam-side by a campfire on my folks' farm one day
"why don't you do a Masters?"
when i was [as usual] rabbitting on about plants and dyes
so i did
and then on my last day at the post-grad studio
i picked up the telephone
and [very boldly]
rang the Leigh Warren Dance company
fully expecting to be fielded by an administrator.
the great man himself answered the phone
and when i stammered that i would like to show him some textiles
"why don't you pop in now, seeing you're just around the corner"
which led to me doing the costumes for
'petroglyphs', 'wanderlust', 'seven' and now 'breathe'
[and because Frances Rings was dancing in 'petroglyphs'...and quite liked her frock, i think, she asked me to do the cozzies for 'debris', the production she choreographed for the West Australian Ballet]
and where do i turn to source the materials for this work?
and where did i first meet Marion [the Supreme Bird who manages that magical resource]?
you guessed it
at a Fibre Forum
organised by the lovely Janet de Boer
while i scour thrift stores and op shops, vintage suppliers of Japanese textiles
and the tip shops of the whirled to make all sorts of things
when it comes to making costumes that dancers will wear night after night
it's kindest to put them in new cloth
silk is gorgeous to dance in
and dyes beautifully
for 'breathe' i've used silk [satin and gauze and organza] from Beautiful Silks [this link takes you to their blog]
and of course also Milkymerino TM
which [while i sourced it directly from the producers] will be stocked by BS
and so available to all who have lusted after it in the past
the big dress in the pix is based on Julian Roberts' subtraction cutting principles
[except that because i built it before i went to his class so it's put together a little differently than he would have done]
it's a double dress
cut from a rectangle [Julian worked with tubes in the class]
of silk organza that measured 12.5metres x 5.2metres*
try and fit THAT on a sewing table
| a composite lapshot pasted|
together using the panorama app -
that blurry thing in the foreground
is my studio assistant Martha...
*the rectangle was stitched together using my overlocker and favourite thread 65%silk+35%cotton
my students will know i have a passion for it...but how to fit the thick stuff through a machine? easy. i talk to my friend Marion and make bleating noises about "wouldn't it be lovely if my favourite thread were available thinner"
a few weeks elapse
and a parcel arrives
the perfect response to my request. oddly the mixed thread dyes better than the pure silk, i think because the surface isn't so smooth and there's something for the colour to grip on to....