I’m a textile artist and a writer.
In the studio, I’m primarily a weaver, dyer, and couture seamstress, producing fabulous handwoven garments, accessories, and wall hangings. I’ve won many awards for my work, including “Best in Show” at the Conference of Northern California Handweavers. My Kodachrome Jacket was featured on the cover of Handwoven magazine. And my handwoven wedding dress is part of the permanent collection at the American Textile History Museum, where it was displayed in their 2013 exhibit Behind the Veil: Brides and Their Stories.
My weaving credentials also include many articles for Handwoven and for Complex Weavers Journal. I sit on the Editorial Advisory Board for Handwoven. And in 2008, I co-founded Weavolution, the social network for handweavers. More information in my resume.
I’m also a writer. In addition to creating articles for Handwoven and Complex Weavers Journal, I’ve written a book, titled Master Your Craft: Strategies for Designing, Making, and Selling Artisan Work, which is scheduled to be published in late 2016 (Schiffer Publishing).
Master Your Craft is drawn from interviews with 22 master artisans, fused with industrial new-product design techniques and my own experience as a fiber artist. Packed with insights from glassworkers, ceramicists, woodworkers, fiber artists, metalworkers, and more, it provides a solid framework for craftspeople who want to grow their artistic skills and the quality of their work.
Master Your Craft provides insights into the process of creating original work: Gathering ideas, brainstorming new designs, evaluating and evolving your work in progress, and critiquing your finished projects. It also contains guidelines for design, so you can make your work visually effective, useful, and practical to create. Finally, it offers suggestions for growing as an artist: Finding your voice, developing your skills, selling your work, and making craftwork a career.
In addition to fiber arts and writing, I have a few other interests. Like chocolate. Every November, I lock myself in the kitchen and make chocolates for four days straight – usually between ninety and a hundred pounds of chocolates, in more than thirty flavors. Seventy boxes of chocolates go to friends, family, and donors to my annual “Chocolates for Charity” campaign. (Over the last ten years, it has raised over $20,000 for charity.) In 2008, I teamed up with another chocolatier and made 133 pounds of chocolates!
I also love adventure travel. In 2002, after getting laid off during the dot-com crash, I decided to go off and see the world, so I packed up all my stuff and spent six months backpacking through Southeast Asia. I traveled solo through Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, and India. While touring, I studied indigenous spinning and weaving. I tried a little bit of everything–I ate rat, scorpion, dog, and beetles. I also learned to dive; jumped off cliffs; rode elephants; lived with Tibetan cave yogis; and saw the Dalai Lama. For photos from my adventures, check out the travel section. For the juicy details, read the travel blog!
I’ve also been to Belize, Guatemala, Ghana, and China. In Ghana I studied kente weaving with Kwame, a member of the Ewe tribe; in China, I did a blitzkrieg tour of the ancient Silk Road. No textiles, alas! but I did get to see the fantastic clay soldiers in Xi’an.
If you want to email me, you can do so at firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy!!