Monday, April 5, 2010

Changing gears...back to liturgical stoles.

Back to work! I feel like I've wrapped up my Indian experiences, and can now focus on my creative work. I have two stole commissions in the pipeline. This one is for a young woman who will be ordained as a deacon in May. I won't identify her or her location because this commission is a surprise gift from family and friends. Water--oceans and rivers--is very important to her so I went to my "water" file to look for possible sources of inspiration.

Family and friends have contributed ties and other fabrics in "water" colours...these materials arrived just before I left for India.

Last week, I sorted them and determined that I needed a greater range in value and intensity. I found several ties from my stash (which is rather enormous--just last week an acquaintance dropped off a bag of ties on my front porch...) that will be appropriate. Here's an image of the augmented materials.

The wave and water images above reminded me of spirals, and so I quickly played around with how I might stitch a spiral... When I do this again, I will use fabrics that have a greater contrast in value, e.g. very light and very dark, so that the spiral is more obvious.

After deciding that yes, indeed, a spiral will be fairly straightforward to stitch, I opened my box of coloured pencils to see how this spiral might "unravel" into swirling lines of "water".

A deacon's stole is designed like a sash across the upper body, with the two pieces attached in a seam at the shoulder and attached at the hip with a cord.

I sent these images to the mother of the young woman to ask for feedback and approval to continue, and was delighted to hear back from her this morning with a most emphatic "LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT!!"

Most reassuring! So now to get to work taking ties apart, washing and pressing, cutting and stitching. I'll post updates on the progress of the stole over the next couple of weeks. Your comments as always are welcome!

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