Wendy Carpenter models some of the finished clothing designs for 2014 including: the Jaspe Indigo Dress, the Tie-Back Tunic Top and the Jaspe Weave Jacket.
A full clothing rack at Interfibers Studio Gallery displaying the jackets, coats, dresses and blouses that were made in Guatemala through my program Creating Revenue through the Arts. I teach and work for 3 months with the women of Guatemala designing and sewing with their hand woven jaspe fabric!
Off-loom weaving #4, art class with Wendy Carpenter at the Clearing in Ellison Bay, WI REGISTRATION: www.theclearing.org
Off-loom weaving #4 will include papermaking and weaving! Students will learn how make paper pulp, pull wet paper with screens and then mold the paper into vessel form to create lamp shades! Wooden lamp bases will be available to purchase in class. Students will also experiment with making small tubes with fabric and paper to weave various forms.
Paper strips can also be made to layer weave on 1’square frames. Students will focus on frame weaving with paper or/and paper making for lamp forms. Wendy Carpenter will provide finished art work for examples and all materials may be purchased in class. Her mixed-media and paper art work can be viewed at www.interfibers.com .
Supply list: drawing pad, scissors, measuring tape, crochet hook & large eye needles, large sponge, apron to protect clothing and Playtex gloves.
Fiber artist, Wendy Carpenter, weaves large scale fiber wall sculptures…Her impressionism art style expresses a personal connection to nature through form, color and tactile material. Wendy owns, Interfibers Studio Gallery, established in 1981, and displays an array of fiber art wall sculptures and hangings, along with clothing made in Guatemala and hand cut and polished jadeite and Door County geode jewelry!
Wendy studied contemporary fiber art weaving at the Evergreen state college, Olympia WA, Rio Grande tapestry weaving in Taos, New Mexico and completed her BA at the University of Wisconsin, GB. In 2002, Carpenter received a liturgical fiber art study grant through the Wisconsin Arts program and has created several commissioned wall hangings and sculptures for community churches and fellowships.
Wendy’s teaching experience spans over 25 years with university level Master student experience at the Instituto De Allende, San Miguel, MX, high school artist-in-residence teaching at Gibraltar and Sevastopol and small art school workshops.
Wendy also travels to Central America and works with the indigenous women…She helps them create revenue and become more self-sustainable through the arts! For three months she works with them teaching them how to sew and market their hand woven fabric.
This Bobby Darling music video provides a great look around Antigua…
Tomorrow, after I torture myself with another Spanish class, I am going to Guatemala City to pick up the serger machine.
Next? I am thinking about designing a long dress!
Today, I passed an elderly, barefooted, Mayan woman on the street and could tell that my giving her money would not protect her feet. She would simply use the money for something else. When I see someone like this, I don’t like to give them money because it encourages them to beg instead of providing for themselves. This woman was not begging, but was obviously in need…
So, we went shoe shopping!
3/20 update: I am making progress with developing a more self-sustainable “creating revenue through the arts” project in Antigua. There is a man from the USA living in San Juan del Obispo ( a little Pueblo outside of Antigua) who needs textile house furnishings for his San Juan home. My plan is to leave all of the equipment in San Juan, so at least two of the ladies that I work with can continue working after I leave. Hopefully it will help other families in the area as well. I plan on visiting San Juan again to learn more about the demographics for San Juan. I have no idea…there may be a lot of foreigners living in San Juan.
Three weeks ago I started alternating my weekly work here with studying Spanish and creating art work. I need to improve my Spanish so I can have more intimate conversations with my co-works! I am also starting to sell more clothes, jewelry and my fiber sculpture work here in Antigua. People are starting to come to my home to purchase clothing!!
I am working with Enrique and all of the families that work with him, cutting and polishing Door County quartz geodes.
I brought along six or so small, egg-shaped geodes. We are slicing the geodes into thin round discs and drilling two holes for attaching silver bails. I like accenting the stones with a handmade silver chain that will extend from the side bails. I have 20 polished geode discs for creating new necklace designs!
I am starting my sewing project today with Aura Lorena from San Juan De Opisbo. I purchased 20 bolts of handwoven jaspe fabric from her and we are carefully laying out our new jacket design for 2014. It is a little tricky matching up the different patterns in handwoven jaspe fabric! We are waiting for the serger to arrive from the States before we can start sewing. A mission group from the Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church is transporting the machine to Guatemala. My plan is to pick it up in Guatemala City on March 7th.
February 26, 2014 update :
We have started sewing without the serger and will go back to hem stitch the raw edges later on after it arrives… 15 jackets so far are waiting for the serger! Tomorrow, I am meeting with a woman from Canada that needs a clothing designer …we will see what happens with that!
March 1, 2014 update:
Today we finished all the jackets and I plan on continuing the sewing project with a new dress design. I went to San Lucas and saw an indigenous woman wearing a beautiful indigo jaspe skirt. She told me that the fabric is available in the San Lucas market, so I am planning to go back to purchase fabric… but this time not on a chicken bus!
The route is through the mountains… lots of fast, sharp curves, very dangerous! It felt like the bus was going to flip over! Not into it… I’ll have to take a taxi next time!
March 5, 2014 update:
I am taking a taxi on Friday to Guatemala City to pick up the serger machine brought here by a mission group from Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church, who have transported it from the States. I hope to also fill a suitcase with jackets and fabric to bring back! I have some of the fabric sorted on the above sofa… my goal is to make 20 jackets! Without the serger, we are sort of at a stand still, so I have been busy with Spanish and salsa classes!