Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Season's Greetings

I can't believe the year is nearly over already.   I'll be taking a short break between Christmas and New Year and we'll re-open on Tuesday  3rd January. Thank you all for your support in 2011 and  I wish you all a very happy, healthy and safe Christmas - New Year.

I found this vintage Santa in a comic strip in the December 1934 edition of  'Fujin (housewives') Club' magazine...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

'Kimono and Obi' 1960

These pictures are from a 'Kimono and Obi' supplement to  Shufunotomo ("Housewife's Friend') magazine from November 1960.

Customers are often surprised by the very fine wool kimono fabrics we have in the shop. They're often in great 1960's and 70's designs.  I'd love a bolt of this red and black marbling effect wool - though I'm not sure that the kimono is a great success with the model's sweet Audrey Hepburn look....

A couple more wool kimono....

And some wonderful coats...

A more traditional look for the young girls...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Exhibition Part 5 - Special Exhibit

We were very honoured to have this special project incorporating fabric, paper and other items from Wafu Works as part of our 10th anniversary exhibition. Emily Doi did this project when she was in grade six at Princes Street Primary School in 2009. It's in the form of the album of a Japanese war bride who moves to Australia  with her serviceman husband whom she met during the occupation.  She made her war bride a seamstress and  used items such as old needles and thread  from the shop in her album.
Emily entered her project in the 2009 Australian National History Challenge where she not only won the overall state and national awards for the grade 5/6 age group but also  the state and national awards in the 'Asia and Australia' and 'Museum Display Model' categories. Emily was named Tasmanian Young Historian  of 2009 and the album  was displayed for some time at the Australian National Museum in Canberra.

This final photo shows the beautiful piece of meisen kimono silk which Emily used to cover the album.  It was an extraordinary achievement and I'm very grateful to Emily for letting us display it as part of our exhibition.

Friday, November 18, 2011

10th Anniversary Exhibition - Part 4

Here are some more colourful entrants in our exhibition.....

Sandra Champion's 'Vintage Fragments' combines original mended fragments from antique kimonos with her own stitching.

Jill  Dixson's 'Japanese Fabrications ' uses a selection of vintage kimono remnants.

Also made from old kimono remnants is  Aukje Boonstra's 'Old Kimono'.  You might need to click and enlarge it to fully appreciate the lovely embroidery she has done on the lining.

More stitching and  old kimono remnants in an untitled work by Merran Franken.

Helen Ducker's 'Wafu Boxes' was inspired by the 'Time and Again' quilt by Susan Briscoe.

Helen Morrison's 'Style of Japan' is a traditional 'kinchaku'  drawstring bag made from 1970's woollen kimono fabric.

Connie Naotsuka's untitled work uses a freehand style of hitomezashi sashiko for a warm rustic effect.

This is Wendy Davey's  komebukuro/rice bag  in a mix of kimono remnants.

This is a detail from Kerri Batten's chain of 'sarubobo'   (lit. baby monkey) dolls. Antique sarubobo are a passion of  mine and I'll be writing more about them in future posts.

Next is Elizabeth Chaffey's  crazy patchwork 'Crazy Bag' .

Shaz Harrison-Williams is well-known for her colourful fold up hats which she sells at Salamanca Market. Her hats were  too big for the A4 criteria of our exhibition so she put one in a little bag....  Both the bag and the hat are made from old woollen girl's juban (undergarment) fabric and a heavier wool 1970's kimono fabric.  Here's the hat...

And finally Jan Janssen's  fun 'Geisha Seuss-she'

That's all the entrants in our exhibition. A Huge thank you to all of them for sharing their very varied talents and for all their hardwork.
 In my next post I hope to have one more 'special exhibit' using fabric, paper  and other items from Wafu Works.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

10th Anniversary Exhibition - Part 3

Here are some more of the entrants in our 'mini-challenge' exhibition....

This is Chris Cook's 'scarf in progress' using silk 'yo-yos' made with one of the  templates that we sell in the shop.

Next is Janet Steele's ' Kanemizu - Nirvanic Water' . Janet wrote, 'while walking beside the confluence of two raging flooded rivers I saw a small area of peaceful water. Finding refuge within it were as many fish as it could hold'.

Margaret Armstrong's 'Rice Bag' is a lovely soft silk interpretation of traditional 'komebukuro' rice bags.

Elizabeth Banks' 'Japanese Iris' applique is stitched using old silk kimono threads.

In 'Whisper of Spring' Coral Tabart used shading seen in traditional Japanese silk embroidery on this very subtle piece of  old kimono silk.

I'm sorry that the photo doesn't do justice to the very fine work in this mini quilt by Myrna McHugh. The designs are from a set of floral kamon designs that we sell in the shop and are embroidered with multiple strands of old machine silk. The backing fabric is cotton kimono lining.

A long carry bag by Trish Reed made from vintage wool and blend kimono fabrics.

A shoulder bag  by Anne Gowans made from a mix of vintage silk and other kimono fabrics including a lovely piece of 'meisen'.

 This  'Forest Square' purse is a patchwork of subtle green kimono silks in an original design by Fern Sanger, age 15.

 Fern's sister Eden Sanger, age 11, made this silk trillium bag with a finely plaited cord.  Eden had seen a similar  bag  and knew it was made from triangles so she worked the pattern out herself in callico before creating this lovely version.

This 'Texture Journal' by Babette Moate is made from a selection of un-dyed kimono silks and finely overstitched ( it's a little hard to see some of the stitching in the photo).

Next are two 'fortune catchers' and a 'bell fruit charm' by Dolores O'Neill based on designs in Kumiko Sudo's 'Omiyage'.

Andrea Sharp's  intriguing 'Pinecone Bag' is based on a Japanese pattern and looks wonderful in these bright kimono silks.

Still more to come.....

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

10th Anniversary Exhibition - Part 2

Here are the some of the individual works from our exhibition. I'll be posting  more soon. The first two were the winners of our viewers' choice prizes (the voting was so close I gave two prizes).

This is Mel Spencer's 'Night Jar'.  This collage includes Mel's own etchings on kimono lining silk. The border paper is the cover of an old Japanese book.

The second viewers' choice prize went to Zyta's 'Rice Water'. This was Zyta's first go at sashiko. She's now working on a hanten with all-over sashiko... a huge project I can't wait to see.

Suzi Barton-Johnson's 'Response' using remnants and buttons from Wafu Works. The framing sticks are  from old Japanese nets for raising silk worms.

Vicki Taiwo's 'Ancient Threads' is another work that really deserves a special mention. Vicki wove this piece (60" x 13") on a backstrap loom in Indonesia using a bundle of antique  remnant kasuri (ikat) threads which she bought from us.

Next is a handbound sketchbook by Michael Englert covered with suede leather and antique kasuri (ikat).

An untitled piece by Raie Semmens using patches of old juban (undergarment) fabric.

'Throughout and Beyond'  woven and patched with kimono remnants by Babs Reed.

A 'Sweet Little Bag' made for giving a gift of sweets by Karen Adams.  A traditional Japanese style of bag made with antique indigo katazome (stencil resist-dyed).

Barb Saunders' 'Essentials'  stitiched with antique indigo remnants.  'Bowl - for cooking, serving, washing, bathing, storage, carrying, offering...  Cloth  - for protection - shade, warmth, shelter, covering, hanging, wrapping, carrying...'

This is Theresa Watts from the Snowy Mountains stitched  'Kasumi - Mist of My Mountains'

'One of Three' by Olga Cocking is, as the title suggests,  part of a triptych of sashiko panels on woollen kimono fabric.

 A sashiko shoulder bag by Judith Spencer with patchwork using some of the new quilting fabrics we sell in the shop.

More to come....

Sunday, November 13, 2011

10th Anniversary Exhibition - Part 1

Early in the year I decided to have a small exhibition of customers' works to celebrate the 10th anniversary of  the shop. The exhibition was held from 29th October  -  12th November and I'm finally getting around to posting some photos. We don't have much space to display larger works and I wanted everyone to be able to enter a piece if they wanted to so I decided on a 'mini-challenge'. Entries needed to be no larger than A4 (though quite a few did creep over that); at least 75% of the materials had to be from Wafu Works; it should be able to be hung on the wall ( though I chose not to hang a few pieces at my curatorial discretion) and there were no other restrictions on theme or style. 
I did give out 'viewers' choice' prizes at the end of the exhibition but I didn't want the exhibition to be considered a competition so much as a showcase of the variety of works that people create with our fabrics (and paper). I also made a point of encouraging beginners and less experienced and/or confident customers to put something in, so we had a range of entrants from children through to professional textile artists.  One thing I love about working in the shop is seeing the pleasure that their craft work brings to my customers whatever their level of expertise and I wanted that joy to be reflected in the exhibition.
Here are some views of the exhibition and I'll post some photos of individual works soon.

This final work is from our youngest entrant Reuben Giles-Clark age 9. It's entitled Spring and was our only all paper entry. I'll be posting more individual works soon.