100% Organic Cotton Fabrics
For home sewers, businesses, retailers, and anyone who gives a scrap!
Check out my "new" couch. Sherry in Nashville did an excellent job making me new covers for our couch. We acquired the couch when it failed to sell at the Gualala Arts Center rummage sale a year or two ago. My husband called and said, "Can I buy a couch?" Sight unseen I became the proud owner of this corner couch. Now that it has a new face lift I am in LOVE with it. Every time I look at it I like it more and more. Note the flower painting in the corner done my oh so talented 14 year old niece, Emma. She is amazing! You might also recognize some other Harmony Art fabrics in the room.
The print I used for the couch covers is our organic cotton twill named Evelyn & Janette after my two grandmothers. The fun thing is that our other couch (in our living room) is a hand-me-down from my grandmother Janette (photo below). It has never been recovered. It's in fairly good shape for being at least 40 years old! I am happy to have earned the nickname Hand-me-down Harm. I like items with history much better than mass produced.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration. I love that we have a holiday dedicated to being with family and friends and sharing good food all under the auspices of gratitude. It was our year to host the event and above is the table setting with my new 40 Ginkgo's tablecloth, lovingly made for me by my friend Betsi Carey. It was a great Thanksgiving in Gualala.
I definitely have much to be thankful for. High on my list are all of my wonderful, kind, thoughtful, patient and understanding customers. This journey of Harmony Art has had plenty of bumps and bruises along the way but I must say that meeting the people has been the best part! I am thankful for YOU!
Three new organic cotton sateens have arrived at our warehouse in South Carolina! Feel free to contact me for the roll lengths if you are interested in purchasing a roll. Retailers should have the fabrics available for individual purchase soon.
There is much to be Thankful for this year! Wishing you a Thanksgiving that is full of love, laughter and memories to be treasured.
The on-demand digital printer Spoonflower asked me to participate in their "Celebrity Smackdown" design competition. The theme we were given was The Elements and we were told to interpret as we liked. You can see the other entries and the winning fabric by clicking this link.
Above is the design I came up with and here's the explanation:
My design was inspired by the ancient I Ching, specifically reading number 53: Wind over Mountain. (The top leaves/petals have an image of grasses being blown in the wind. The lower leaves/petals contain photos of mountains.) The background of my design is the ancient I Ching coin (round coin with square hole in the center).
53: Wind over Mountain - Chien/Development - Those who persevere make continuous progress.
I really wanted to take the opportunity to do a design that could not be printed using rotary technology (which is how I print my stock fabrics). Rotary screens could never get the photographic effect that you can achieve with digital. I figured if I was going to do a design specifically for digital printing it should use those advantages.... unlimited colors with no per color screen charges - heaven!
I have done some digital printing in the past for special projects like a photo shoot for Modern Bride magazine or special pillows for an interior design project, but I had never printed with Spoonflower. I learned a few things in the process. Spoonflower is definitely geared towards automation. Their business model certainly seems to hing on this. See, I did the design, in repeat, uploaded it only to find out my esoteric 3" drop was not an option. WHA? I was shocked to learn that digital printing can be less accommodating than rotary. I had never in my 13 years of designing textiles been told that my drop had to be a particular size. So, of course, being me I had to ask why? It comes down to automation. To give everyone the right to make any drop would require different scripts to be written. Spoonflower only has automated 1/2 drops along with a few other more straight forward options. So, if you want to print with them you must get with their program. Wish I had realized this before I did the repeat - sigh - I did the repeat over. From their business model it makes complete sense. From a designer's perspective, I found it annoying.
I told Spoonflower I would ONLY participate if I could specify that my print only be printed on organic fabrics. I made the commitment to organic fabrics in January of 2005 and am not about to end that commitment for this competition. They agreed to my "terms" but are so far unable to limit what selection of base fabrics someone can choose. So, my design is not available for purchase at this time. They tell me they are working on it. This is another example of the down side of automation. On the plus side their printing is very reasonably priced and they seemed to have created a wonderful community of designers. If I were a new designer just the thrill of seeing my design on fabric would have me sucked in. Their weekly (open to all) contests are also a great way to get your designs seen and your name out there. Congrats to Samarra Khaja (representing the Spoonflower home team) for her takin' the win.
What would I have gotten if I had won? Well, the prize was that 20% of the sales of the fabric of any of the contestants would go to the charity of the winner's choice. Drat! That would have been fun to pick. Oh well... you win some, you lose some.
To quote the I Ching this design is based on again: " Those who persevere make continuous progress." Cheers to that.
I am SUPER DUPER happy to announce, after close to 4 years, my contest for a FREE ROLL of fabric has finally been earned. Three Cheers for Tanya for completing a list of 2,010 unique and thoughtful things to be thankful for. She is still deciding what roll of fabric (limited release or clearance) she is going to choose. Her list is more than words on paper it is a work of art. Here are some photos from the list I received in the mail yesterday. I love the way her son obviously got in to the gratitude spirit too. Thank you Mary for introducing Tanya and for helping inspire this contest's completion.
For those of you who are saying, WAH, A FREE ROLL OF FABRIC and all I had to do was create a list of 2,010 things to be thankful for.... take heart, a new year and a new list is right around the corner. Stay tuned... a 2,011 list to ring in the new year is a likely occurrence. Hopefully it won't take 4 more years to reward another winner.
There is so much to be grateful for.
The winners from last week's Pink Fabric Giveaway are Kristy and Beatrix. They have been notified by email. THANK YOU to everyone who participated.
Are you curious to find out how I picked? Well, it was all very scientific. Well, actually, my husband and I have been doing our I Ching every morning lately so we decided to let the coins decide. His readings this morning were 37 changing to 17. Since we didn't have that many entries, we added the numbers together to get 10 and 8. Not familiar with the I Ching? It's an ancient Chinese text that is full of wisdom and advice on how to face life's challenges and changes. I am personally a fan of Brian Browne Walker's interpretation. (Like the Bible it has many different translations.) I have been a user of the I Ching for the last oh... 12 years or so. I hold the I Ching personally responsible for keeping me sane through several challenging times.
In other exciting news... TODAY is Harmony Grace's (my namesake's) 1st birthday. Wish I could beam to New York to join in the children's musical jam session happening tonight. sigh.
I have an odd shower. It is the width of a tub shower but extra tall since you step down into it. Finding a shower liner has always been a bit of a challenge. I refuse, I mean REFUSE to buy a vinyl shower curtain. (True confessions: in my previous life I use to design them. When the samples would arrive at the office you could smell them for days. I knew then it was not healthy. At that point in my life, I didn't realize how unhealthy.)
I am not a particularly crafty person but when our shower needed a new liner I decided there had to be a non-vinyl solution. . . I considered fabric but was concerned about mold, didn't want any creepy finished fabric, and didn't want polyester. I decided to create my own Tyvek® shower curtain. Tyvek® is that material that the USPS priority mail bags are made out of. They are cradle to cradle silver certified. They are made partly from recycled plastic milk jugs and water bottles in a closed loop system.
I sewed two pieces together to make one wide and long enough piece. I folded one side over and sewed a section at the top. I thought I would need to add grommets but discovered a simple hole punch did the trick. There are no seams on any of the other 3 sides so water runs right off and nothing gets trapped. No fraying. About 6 weeks into the experiment and it is working really well. I think I will even be able to throw it in the washing machine if it needs freshening.
The one small draw back is that it is a bit loud! No, it isn't as LOUD as the SunChip compostable bags and frankly I will take a bit of noise getting in and out of the shower over breathing toxic, cancer causing fumes.
Unlike here in the USA where Frito-Lay caved to complaints of their compostable bag being too loud, the Canada division is standing their ground. Three CHEERS to our SunChip neighbors to the north. The company's campaign slogan is: "Our bag is loud, our bag is different, our bag is good for the environment, and our bag will remain on store shelves."
I'm really lucky. I can walk (3 miles) to the beach from my house. I try to make the walk at least once a week. Usually I time it so I can catch the sunset and meet my husband or a friend at the beach so I can hop a ride home (all up hill).
Last night's walk to the beach left me very disturbed. For the 2nd time (first time was 1/9/10) I noticed large quantities of tiny pieces of plastic all along the tide lines of the beach. I literally felt sick when I saw it. Yesterday's big surf brought in more than "killer" waves. It brought in signs of our killing the ocean. You read about the Gyres but when it shows up in such a mass in your own back yard it can shake ya.
We collected as much as we could as the light faded away. We estimated it would take 3 of us at least a few days of working all day to collect the tiny fragments. We MUST stop the spigot and stop the needless use of plastic.... unless we do, the problem will only get larger and larger. For now I see it after a big surf day, but how long until this is a daily sight? Only time will tell.
October was breast cancer awareness month. I know I am a few days late but wanted to pass on this information (recently posted on Grist) about preventing breast cancer. To me, prevention makes the most sense. If there are known causes, by all means let's stop our exposure to those things! Ask Umbra's post identifies these things to avoid:
In honor of this important topic, I am giving away of 2 yards of solid pastel pink organic sateen OR 2 yards of Pink Moon 2nds (also organic cotton sateen) to 2 people who post on this entry about some way they are helping prevent breast cancer in their own lives or the lives of others. They will be selected at random one week from today.
I would love a cure, but in the meantime let's stop the nonsense and avoid these known causes.
Founder of Harmony Art organic design.