Friday, August 31, 2012

Boro Yogi Progress

The cloth is now really in the shape of a yogi- in this case like a narrow-armed robe. It doesn't quite show itself as a yogi yet, because the sleeves beyond the body are still only two layers of cloth- the base cloth and the thin cloth that I weave into. I think that once the sleeves are finished on both sides, thicker and heavier, they will show more.

On the right hand side of this photo, you can see the top of the one front panel is complete. I am going to move across to the other side next, finishing the edges of the sleeves beyond the main trunk of the cloth later.

Filling in this top front panel, I get the feeling of the pieces really coming together into one cloth. The shoulder seam is less stressed, the bottom hangs flatter. The front bows out a bit, making room inside. It is starting to hang like it is a coat, I guess. When I pick it up, it really feels like a garment already.

And I gave the dragon eyes, and a pearl to chase.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Assembling the Sleeping Cover

I have assembled the pieces of the sleeping cover (see previous post) that I am calling a hybrid boro yogi. A yogi is a garment-shaped coverlet used to cover a sleeping body. I saw one first in Stephen Szczepanek's beautiful catalogue for the show Mottainai: The Fabric of Life. A proper yogi would have a removable stuffing, which this one doesn't. Doesn't yet at least. I'll see.

I have made this one from components- the back panel, two front side panels and four pieces for the sleeves. I thought a lot about the process of constructing a garment while I worked on this- setting the pattern pieces, pinning them, cutting, etc. This is very different. The seams are lapped, and I just closed them with running stitch. And none of the component pieces is complete at this point, and now I'll just work directly on the cloth, stitching across the seams where the components meet. The blue cloth above is the lining of the sleeves which will be covered with patches. Here is a view of the back (and Emma Goldman the old man cat/my shadow):

And here is a view of the front. The cloth on the sleeve on the right will also be on the left sleeve. This over cloth is the first thing I printed with native wild blackberry leaves two years ago. The cloth is an old diaper (found in a box of rags). I'm going to work around those prints. They look very elegant to me. And they evoke being outside to me; these leaves are from the blackberry we grow just along the fence at the right of this photo, but are from seeds and berries the birds must have foraged along the river. I think this is very definately cloth for being outside. Maybe for sleeping outside.

I need to figure out something to do for the collar; a proper yogi has a collar like a kimono. It suggests the shape of the back of the neck. It is kind of like a lapel on a jacket. It runs from midway on one front panel up around the back of the neck and back down the front. I think it needs to be one piece of cloth so that it will stand up, and give the impression of hugging the sleeper's neck.

I also have a plan for making it a sleeping bag- I found a matched pair of extremely long skate laces in a parking lot last week. If I attach them to the yogi, then I can tie it into a bundle. Like this: