Monday, May 22, 2017

To Tell a Story with Cloth: Impressions, Connections, and Memories: Memory Cloths

Judith K.-P.: This of Judith's Memories of Japan series, was inspired by a Haiku by renown Japanese poet, Matsuo Basho. Judith printed the fabric flowers and crocheted the basket from twine. The poem is written with pen and embellished with stitching.
This is the final post of five showing student work from my To Tell a Story with Cloth: Impressions, Connections, and Memories class. I want to highlight finished pieces and works-in-progress.

Judith K.-P.: Part of the Memories of Japan series. This piece was started in the Mapping Memories lesson. It is an Impressions Map of her experience in Japan. Applique, Trapunto, hand stitching.
Judith K.-P.: Another piece from the Memories of Japan series featuring a Haiku by poet, Chen-ou Liu. The teapot print was created using an embossed aluminum printing plate.
Ann Z.: Memories of Beach series. This piece is still in process. Ann is planning to add some additional stitching. Here she is auditioning some textures.
Ann Z.: Detail of stitching and reverse applique. Ann is also working on a series of smaller pieces featuring stitched words inspired by Rachel Carson's writings.
Jan B.: In addition to the pieces about her parents (see Significant Object Portraits and Word Impressions posts below), Jan is continuing work on this Color Map. She is adding a stitched azalea over the spring greens.

Barbara C.: As part of her Memories of London series, Barbara created this little box sculpture featuring some of her hand printed fabrics along with fabrics purchased on her recent London trip. The house is the one that T. S. Eliot lived in. You can see the Eliot poem piece in the Word Impressions blog post below).

Barbara C.: Here is the incised craft foam print block she used.

Barbara C.: I couldn't resist including this incredible stitched ribbon that Barbara bought in London. She is using bits and pieces of it in her continuing series.
Alice A.: Alice fell in love with this little Mexican bull! It is a motif that reminded her of her childhood and visits to a marketplace in Mexico. Alice realized that watching the women weaving and making their wares is what inspired her to become a weaver and fiber artist. This print was created with a freezer paper stencil.
Alice A.: Freezer paper stencil.
Alice A.: This little red bull was created with a freezer paper stencil and an aluminum printing plate.

Alice A.: Alice made these miniature aluminum animals based on her memories of  Mexican tin ornaments. She plans to attach them to one of her Memory cloths.
Judy M.: A selection of Judy's Memory cloths about visits with her grandmother at the cottage near Lake Michigan. Judy is continuing to create more pieces and plans to turn them all into a cloth book.
Judy M.: Map showing the location of the cottage.
Judy M.: The cottage.
Judy M.: Completed version of Coffee and Milkshakes.
Judy M.: Good Night! Judy's grandmother used to wish her good night through the wall between their rooms. She would say "good night" in many different languages.
Judy M.: Judy's grandmother used to read lots of poetry with Judy. Here is a line from one of the poems.

I have to say that this was an extremely rewarding class to teach. First, I gave the original Story Cloth class a complete overhaul. Rather than having all the classwork culminate in one piece, I decided to break the class into themes. I also added journaling and assignments with cut paper and color pencils at the beginning of each class as a way to get students focused on the theme of the week. Students were able to choose from a number of suggested challenges. So the pressure was off about making one "perfect" piece and instead encouraged students to begin thinking and working in a series. It also helped to have a group of enthusiastic, open-minded and trusting a BIG thank you goes out to you... intrepid students!

If you haven't had the chance to read the previous posts about this class you can follow the links below:

Color Connections
Mapping Memories
Significant Object Portraits
Word Impressions

If you live in the Washington D.C. area and would like to take this class, I will be offering an evening version in Fall 2017 and a daytime version in Spring 2018. Specific dates TBA. Please feel free to contact me with your questions.


  1. I have truly enjoyed these examples of your students work...great themes...true heart memories!

    1. Thanks Mary Ann- I'm missing teaching them already! I see that you are working on a Memory Map piece. Can't wait to see where is goes!