Saturday, January 21, 2012

Another Magic Diaries Cloth....

I have, kind of by accident, started a second Magic Diaries cloth, another one to help me think about foraging around in the outdoors here in the city. This one started with a funny little incident, when a squirrel stole a little shibori bundle off the back steps- I set it to drain on the lid of the walnut dye pot. This is kind of what it might have looked like to her, but not as frayed:

Squirrel Chewed in Bundle Form 2

And it tasted like walnuts. So two days later I noticed a squirrel on the peak of the shop behind the kitchen nibbling away on something, something which kept getting bigger. It was the missing bundle unfurling in the wind as she turned it to nibble the edges. I found the cloth where she dropped it:

Squirrel Chewed Holes

All nicely nibbled into a pattern. To preserve her work, I used one of Jude's methods from CWB, which is to just take the whole cloth and slit it where you want to weave something into it. I stitched the squirrel's patterned pieces to a walnut dyed tea towel, which seemed right.

Cutting around the eye/vortex thing below that came out of the same pot on the same day as 'the squirrel incident' (it's a mark made by a huge rusty bearing tied up in cotton), I started cutting in curves. This is another thing Jude taught us in CWB. So these slits, running in parallel but wavering lines, create these shapes that are fascinating me. And the weird warping movement of the thing.

There are twenty things about this so far that I am going to change, but for now it is just so easy to play with. It is almost all found cloth, except for a strip or two of old pillow case (my fern print thing above), some silk from an old blouse of my Mom's, a little yellow sari strip, a patch of linen tablecloth dyed in my indigo jar and a glorious strip of silk from Arlee.

But my favorite thing about this so far is this ivory coloured cloth:

It's a piece of a tent, a former Rag of the Day, that I found tangled up in branches at the river. It's just a fragment of a nylon tent, but it is just my favorite thing. It gives me hope for all of the discarded umbrellas I'll find in the spring. 

Friday, January 6, 2012

Rag of the Day 2011 Wrap Up

 -cotton-blend? velvet-type, partially sunfaded; found on the curb on Horton Street where it had been plowed up out of the gutter with the snow; had one panel of wood (at the top here) glued to it.  'Up-stream' is a place which regularly throws out old cases from musical instruments. December 2011, but I can't remember which day.

-polyester (some type) cover from an 'accent cushion'; tangled up at the bank in Weekend Park between Pebble Beach and Sandy Beach; the polyester fill stuffing had been pulled out by the recent floods and fanned out for yards where it caught on stems of plants and looked like tiny snow drifts. Horrifyingly the cloth has no fading, few pulls, no signs of erosion at all even though it has been underwater, in the sand, for weeks. December 31 2011.

Strange new finds. I love the colour of the purple and how it faded so consistently to mauve. It is not a particularly drapey velvet, it is stiffer, but will be a perfect base for stitching, maybe applique. The polyester brocaded kind of thing is easy to sew, but feels cold and unpleasant to the touch. I could use it as a lining for something, between cloths. And it appears it will last - forever.