The Fabric of our Lives

Fabric plays an important role in our society. It provides protection from the elements through blankets, tents, and clothing. Textiles allow us to create our persona by what we wear or how we decorate our home. Unfortunately, fabric and construction allow others to judge or define us by how much money we choose to spend on clothing or décor or our stash.

As quilters fabric plays a doubly important role in our lives. It is used for our art form. Fiber art is how we express ourselves, even communicate. Quilting is a way that we provide gifts or donate to charity. Although it is usually cotton, it can be wool, silk, velvet or any fabric of choice.

Each of us has a fabric that is our passion or speaks to us. It can be the technique used to create the textile whether hand dyed, special weaving, or painted. It can be the composition of the fabric: wool, cotton, silk. We recently went to see an exhibition on ikat at the Los Angeles County Museum. Ikat calls to Kay, she loves it. I appreciate ikat, but not to the same extent. Instead I simply planned a quick run through the exhibit, until I saw the linings. Hidden inside the garments were the most amazing fabrics of chintz and indigo resist.

The chintz was enough to entertain me, until I was immediately drawn to the indigo resist. There is something about that dyeing technique that calls to me. The call of hand painted fabric from another room and another exhibition also caught my attention. I wasn’t leaving without checking out this amazing Palampore with birds. I could have done with out the five feet on the piece, (yes there is a foot in each of the shields) but the painting artistry of the chintz was not to be denied. We extended our visit at the museum to spend more time with this Palampore. Admire and listen to what fabric makes your heart sing!

 
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