Every piece has a story
Every juicebox workshop piece has a story. Some stories delve into the origins of the textiles, while others explore the wonderful people and wild places that inspired the piece. Most stories do a bit of both. Here are some highlights.
A few days before my mama passed away, I asked her a ton of ‘what is your favorite __’ questions, and compiled her replies into a google doc that I shared with my family. I am reminded of one or more of her various responses nearly every day. Today, it’s ‘What’s your favorite season?’ “Autumn has always been waiting, she said, “Now I feel it calling me.” Mind you, this conversation happened in late May. At the time, I interpreted it to mean that she thought she’d leave us several months later, sometime after the trees changed colors and dropped their leaves. We still could look forward to one last Fall together. Instead, early June rang for her.
The Seascape Series
Unknowable in its depths, yet predictable in its tides, the ocean is a place of great wonder, joy, and comfort for me. While I channel my mom in all of my work, the seascapes series is a tribute to her. Some of my favorite memories are of swimming in the ocean with my mom. As she floated over every wave, she’d emit this sing-songy, joyful “aaaaahhh.” It’d make me laugh, and more than once do I remember laughing so hard that I missed the next oncoming wave, and ended up washed up at shore, my nose full of salt water. The first seascape I created was as a birthday gift for my mom’s twin sister, lovingly commissioned by my cousin. February 1, 2021, the first birthday without her twinnie. The first time I couldn’t call my mama to wish her a happy birthday. At the time, I didn’t anticipate an ongoing series, but like the sea, I continue to be drawn back in to create more. Each piece integrates textiles from both of my parents. And you know what’s super magical? Nearly every seascape that’s gone out into the world has been purchased as a gift for a mom or a sister. Of course. Thank you. What JOY.
This piece is based on a dream I had a few months back. I was driving along a western highway and kept passing all these incredible rock formations that I wanted to explore, but the car would simply not. stop. moving. I often feel this way this time of year—a desire to rush out of winter and hurry into warmer days and activities. But if I’m not careful, Spring passes me by. One blink and I’m sitting in a puddle of August sweat, unable to remember those cool mornings in April, erupting with birdsongs and daffodils (and allergies). Does anyone else experience this? It also translates to my time on the trail—too often I rush, forgetting to breathe, quiet my mind, and take in the view. May this western highway serve as a reminder to stop. To look, and explore, to savor more of life’s little moments.
Repurposed cotton, denim, lambswool, polyester, upholstery blends, silk blend, acyrlic paint, and embroidery thread.
9" x 11"
Have you ever seen a turquoise lake? I’ve been fortunate to visit several glacier lakes, and Aotearoa NZ’s Lake Tepako tops the list. Swipe to see me taking a dip! I’d say Tepako was “refreshing,” but if memory serves me, it was the coldest body of water I’ve ever been submerged in. My beautiful lake bucket list is ever-growing, and this is inspired by both places I’ve been, and places I hope to one day see. My favorite details are the pleather snow caps and the ombré denim mountain in the foreground, emulating ice. Watch your step!
Repurposed merino, lambswool, denim, cotton, polyester, silk, pleather, felted wool, vinyl, upholstery blend, and embroidery thread.
This is Eve. Eve lives in Philadelphia and likes art and history and trying new hobbies (she’s currently exploring mosaic making). She contacted me in January, asking if I might be able to do something special with her favorite vintage t-shirts. At first I was hesitant to take scissors to any of these prized cotton pieces. Check out the one commomorating International Women's Year in 1975, and the 1989 one from Iris Glen Feminist Camp. And that cat! They're all so wonderful. "My sister told me to put all the shirts in a drawer," Eve laughed, "but I told her she was missing the point." I couldn't agree more. We chatted on the phone and emailed back and forth for a few weeks, discussing some design ideas, and in the end, I kept things simple. No embroidery, or quilting, no additional textile elements were needed. There was even a tiny hole in one shirt that I (GASP) left un-mended. The shirts sing on their own. I recently hand-delivered the piece to her home and we worked together to find the perfect place for it. Now displayed as a collage in her living room, Eve is happy she can continue to celebrate these colorful textiles and decades of memories.
Are you interested in transforming some of your favorite wearables into a work of art? Please email me!
Since my mama died, my dad has picked up a new hobby turned obsession: pickle ball!! He plays nearly every day and has formed many new friendships along the way. I’ve even joined him on the court-it’s super fun. Did you know pickle ball is the fastest growing sport in the country? A few months ago, my dad joined a some of these pals on a guided water rafting trip in Ohiopyle, PA. “I’ve always wanted to do that” he said, “I dared everyone to jump in with me at the base. It was cold! Can’t wait to plan our next trip.” My dad now owns two wet suits.
While this canyon captures a more western landscape, my dad’s enthusiasm is stitched into the rapids, which I created from his old Wrangler jeans. Better get your wetsuit ready.
Repurposed lambswool, denim, silk, cotton, polyester, upholstery blends, poly felt, and embroidery thread.
9.75" x 11.75"
Fences. Some are built to hold things in, others to keep things out. If you look closely in the first photo, you’ll see the chicken wire barricade I rigged up to prevent the neighborhood squirrels from digging in my backyard raised bed. It’s been mostly effective. 🐿
In this latest landscape, the fence is always open. Come on in, stay for a while, enjoy the view. All are welcome.
Repurposed cotton, velvet, denim, lambswool, merino, silk, cork, upholstery blends, crewel wool yarn, corduroy, and embroidery thread.
10" x 12"