Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday's Fiber Artist - TeeGee

Hello fiber arts lovers! I am very excited to be featuring this weeks artist, TeeGee.

Oak Flame Velvet Shibori Scarf by TeeGee
TeeGee is also known as Mom, Beth, and quite possibly "Hey, Lady".  Like many who love fibers and textiles, Beth has fallen for more than one medium. After focusing on quilting off and on for 8 years, she has turned her creative inquisitiveness to the Japanese art of Shibori. This is a form of pleating, folding, stitching, binding, and dyeing of fabric that can be traced back to 8th Century Japan.

Velvet Bomaki and Arashi Shibori Scarf by TeeGee
Beth utilizes various Shibori techniques to create the magnificent scarves at TeeGee's. These methods include Bomaki Shibori and Arashi Shibori. In the Bomaki method, the scarf is dyed, stiched, then compressed on a large pole. After it is compressed on the pole, the color is discharged from certain areas and then overdyed with another color. In Arashi, the scarf is stitched, then compressed and wrapped on a large pole, which creates areas of resist where the dye cannot penetrate. Then thickened dye is applied to the pole wrapped scarf.

Although anyone who knows me is familiar with my love of silk scarves(you should see my coat rack), I absolutely love the Bamboo Rainbow Socks. I love how she incorporates the use of Shibori to create these fun and colorful socks.

Hand Dyed Rainbow Socks for Little Kids by TeeGee

Here is Beth in her own words describing her creative evolution:

"As a kid and in high school I tended to gravitate away from sewing and needlework as crafts and more towards building and tactile type arts, like pottery and sculpture.

I returned to sewing as an adult, first as a utilitarian quest, making linens and so forth for our apartment and making costumes and sometimes clothes for my little ones.  Quilting caught my attention early on and I found I really enjoyed staying up till all hours after the kids were asleep designing & piecing quilt tops.  Like a lot of quilters I have come across- I seemed to have an aversion to actually finishing them.  I just like the designing & piecing. There is a shelf full of unfinished quilts- just waiting for me to get them sandwiched and quilted.

It was when I was looking for “just the right color” for a quilt I was putting together, that I tried dyeing my first fabric, just a few fat quarters, in the sink.  I loved doing it but didn’t really have enough room to go all out with a dye studio, so that hobby was shelved till about 2006 when I picked it back up again and I started dyeing gradations and full color wheels on cotton. Soon after I started doing scarves in Low Water Immersion- which I really love doing because in a way it seems so simple but can go oh so wrong if the wrong colors start blending. 

I also love playing with wax on fabric, and honestly I think the most “fun” is using splattering soy wax in random patterns. I’ve also experimented with mono-printing with thickened dye, and various kinds of resists like potato & corn starch, and even old fencing from my garden.

I’ve been reading and studying about shibori for the last few years, I love the effects of the colors on velvet, especially when discharged and overdyed a few times. It’s always a surprise, usually a good one.  It is very labor intensive, but so worth it when you unravel the threads and start rinsing – I love that moment more than any other when I’m working with dyes.

I have a bit of creative ADD- as I can’t quite always focus on one thing. Right now I’m taking advantage of a new sewing machine and finally returning to using the raw fabrics I’ve dyed. So far in the works: a quilt and several shawls & constructed scaves and a few bags.  I’ve also finally tried dyeing fiber again and hope to find a way to work it into my work with all these textiles.  I love the process of taking boring white fabrics and manipulating it texturally and with color to make something completely different. Now if I could only find the time after my day job and my family to do that on a regular basis- then I’d be golden."

Batiked Willow Branch SIlk Charmeuse Scarf by TeeGee

I want to give a big thanks to Beth for allowing me to feature her and TeeGee on Desert Dyeworks. If you have any questions about Shibori or any other techniques that Beth uses, please feel free to leave a comment with your questions.

Happy Friday!

1 comment:

  1. Beth is an amazing fiber artist as well as an amazing person. She inspired me to get started and I love seeing what she creates!