Thursday, April 30, 2009

more from Portland...

Before my Portland trip is disappears into the too far distant past, I want to tell of some more wonderful going-ons that i found there. First Portland had so many crafty events ~ here is a video segment which highlights many of these. I was lucky enough to be there when Crafty Wonderland was happening. This is a craft market which is held once a month at the Doug Fir Lounge. Here is a coffee cup holder I got there from Flapper Girl. It has been quite a hit around the Boston area. Artist Kate Bingaman-Burt was exhibiting her Obsessive Consumption: What Did You Buy Today?collection of zines. She draws one of her purchases of the day and then compiles each month in a zine. Her work reminded me of New York artist, Danica Phelps . When i spoke with Kate she said she was familiar with Danica's work & that there is a network of artists who deal with consumption. Another vendor that i loved was PearlyGrey - beautiful baby blankets and bibs. Their sock monkey bib was a perfect baby gift. And that is just a sampling of the cool vendors I found at Crafty Wonderland.

Another exciting event during the weekend was the Portland Premiere of Handmade Nation - a movie that documents the exploding DIY (do-it-yourself) movement across the country. I sadly didn't get to see the movie - all the showing were sold out. But the movie brought such a wildly creative atmosphere to the city which sent my creative brain whirling and I made a few dresses..

first the foliage in Portland was so different from here that I wanted to make dresses ALL THE TIME, but i couldn't. However I did make 2 'nature' dresses.
The first one, 'Backyard Foliage', was made on my friends back deck.

The other is 'My mother was a Seamstress'.

I saw this tree - and sadly I don't know name of this tree - on a walk. This tree had the most beautiful, vibrant flowers that i HAD to make a dress - the blossoms screamed to be breasts. The next day I returned and started to make the dress under the tree on these people's property. As i worked I thought no one was home but then the garage door (which was right next to where i was working - see photo) opened and out came the home owner... I held my breath. He was very receptive to me working on his well groomed yard. When he saw it was a dress he said 'my mother was a seamstress' hence the name. He even commented that he hoped the dress would stay up for the company that he was having that night. It was wonderful affirmation as I had been a bit nervous climbing all around under this man's tree looking for the perfect pedals.
It was the making of this dress that reminded me of how much I love being in the process of creating. How it is especially exhilarating to be outside - searching for the right petal, discovering how to use the brown decaying petals, the excitement of solving 'engineering' problems - such as this very steep hill (I used twigs to secure the petals) & just working out in public ~ responding to the comments of passer-bys. It was outside, in the public that the Dress Project began and it was wonderful to rediscover that pleasure.

I made one more dress was made in Portland but that is for another post - this one has gotten way too long!! thanks for reading & peace!!!


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