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Aug 21

Hand Embroidery, Art of the Sinai

Masterful, hand embroidery and bead artisanry often reminds me of the “hamsa”, the symbol of the hand of Fatima, daughter of the prophet Mohammed. It symbolizes patience, loyalty, faith, and resistance against difficulties. The Bedouin Jabaliya women, who create the embellished hand arts for the social enterprise FanSina, represent these→ Read more

Aug 07

5 Ideas with Steps for Displaying Narrow, Long Textiles

Displaying textiles, especially narrow, long ones such as bands and braids, can be a challenge. Dangling them over a rod is an easy solution, but not very attractive. Plus, there are visual and conservation considerations: A proper mount needs to account for any inherent weakness in the textile, be aesthetically→ Read more

Jul 30

Come Behind-the-Scenes: Naturally Dyeing and Printing Silk Fabric

How often does one get to travel to India and see the actual natural dye process and block printing of your own fabric? Follow along and you’ll get to see the video of the making of this mulberry silk, hand woven in a window-pane gauze, being created under the guidance→ Read more

Jul 24

The Splendors of the Santa Fe Folk Art Market

Last week we returned from the yearly “pilgrimage” to the Santa Fe Folk Art Market. This year’s market felt especially fresh, mostly attributable to a third of the artisans being first-timers which meant new textile treats and new friends. Imagine these new artisans being in the U.S. for the first→ Read more

Jul 10

Lao Weaving + Natural Dyes = Hand Woven Cloth

At the start of every trip, I’m reluctant to plop down money at the first hand woven textile which calls to me. But here I was on my first visit to Laos where “Everyone knows how to weave but not how to survive with their weaving” (as explained to me→ Read more

Jul 03

Celebrate Natural Dyes Red, White, and Blue

Celebrate the Fourth with natural dyes explosion of color–crimson red from cochineal, white (how natural, no dye needed), and blue from indigo. Early Americans used natural dyes to create the flag’s signature red stripes and blue canton.→ Read more

Jun 25

100% Natural Anjat Basket: Hand Woven Rattan with Natural Dyes

Without fail, the most common asked question to an artisan or maker, is “How long did it take you to make that?” In the case of this Anjat basket which is handwoven and naturally-dyed from the bast fiber rattan, the answer would depend on whether it includes the growing and→ Read more

Jun 16

Two Simple Ways to Hang and Display Textiles

How many times have you taken your favorite textile and just pinned it up on the wall? Or grabbed a rod or stick, and folded the textile over it, securing it with a pin or tape to hold it in place? It’s easy enough to do. But it’s certainly not→ Read more

Jun 12

Men at Work: Knitting and Weaving in Peru

Chahuaytire man knitting a traditional multicolored alpaca/wool hat.→ Read more

Jun 05

All in the Family: Indian Male Textile Artisans

When we launched ClothRoads, our focus was to support women weaving cooperatives. And we do, mostly. But as we traveled the globe and met more artisans, it didn’t take long to realize the scope had to be expanded to include male artisans too. It became ever more apparent in India—a→ Read more

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