Photo Journeys through Fiber, Art, Craft and Farms
Here’s what we’ve been doing while staying at home. Images here are submitted by Maine Fiberarts’ staff and our readers. What have you been doing? Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org) a photo or two with a tiny caption and we will post it here with everyone’s (stay at) home work.
What have you been working on while staying at home?
Despite the fact most 2020 Bicentennial events have been pushed off until next year, I was busy most of this winter learning how to sew and wear 1820's fashions, from lingerie to hats! What a challenging project, but the photos demonstrate my success. Thank you for asking about what "we" have been creating during the pandemic! I began making this costume when I started writing book #2 of the Swan Island in the Kennebec historic novel trilogy. Book one was mostly about who, from where, why and when settlers came up the Kennebec to settle on Swan Island. Book two will encompass the increased settlement, Kennebec Proprietors movements/purchases, businesses created on the island and what island life was like during the 1800's. This costume allows me to "feel" what it was like to not only sew the clothing but wear it was well, allowing me to "become" one of that time period while I write!
Quilting runs in my DNA. In fact, my modest collection of vintage quilts includes the work of my maternal great-grandmother and my paternal grandmother, as well as my favorite great aunt. My approaching retirement has given me the motivation to pursue this long-admired art form. The need to stay at home during the pandemic gave me time for additional focused practice. Although my handiwork will never match that of my foremothers, I hope my improvisational quilts bring a measure of pleasure, if not comfort, to the people whose lives they touch.
This time at home is very special for creating. I was supposed to have a Special Exhibit, lecture, and give a class during Rug Hooking Week at Sauder Village in Ohio this August. The Exhibit was titled " Island Life Old and New" and included eight hand hooked pieces that depicts life on Bailey Island, Maine. The opportunity to make more pieces during this time of staying safe has been challenging and fun. 'Sunset Calling" has 23 different dyed grey yarns that re hand hooked plus some 3-D conch wool felting. The B.I. Fishermen include Bailey Island's locals and best that is hand hooked plus hand knotted fish netting currently being made.
I tried to take the opportunity to hone my natural dyeing skills and I went a little crazy... finding things readily available at home, like frozen berries, beets, spinach, onion skins, tumeric, etc. I am doing a line of cut velvet silk devore scarves. The attached items are, in sequence- onion skin, indigo, beet, cochineal dyes.
Vivian sent in photos of her “Thrummed Cap” and a pair of “City of London Mittens.” Sailors wore thrummed caps at sea in the 17 century to wick away the moisture from their heads. The cap is reversible. The mittens are great for Maine so I knit them for myself. All knit with 100% wool. Vivian also knits "garb" in the 17 Century style for the interpreters at the Plymouth Plantation Museum in Massachusetts.