So when my friend, Linda, moved back to Michigan last summer, she left a hole in many hearts here. She was well loved and oh, so talented. She became a friend last year when she took my dyeing class, and became instantly hooked. We spent many a dye day together, and I lent her lots of tools and books and etc. when I went north last spring. But she decided to move north herself, and when she returned my things, she also bestowed a bevy of hand-me-downs to my doorstep. One item was a 30 yard bolt of beautiful white rayon that she had recently ordered from Dharma and hadn't used an inch of it. Wow! What a gift...now what to do with it?
About 5 years ago, I made the shirt above out of dyed cotton...I wanted a simple Mexican-like shirt that was cool, colorful and comfortable and I achieved it with this design. This summer, I made a few more, with side pockets, but they never did quite fit the same as this first one (I didn't have the original with me to use as a pattern). So, why not try more shirts with rayon. And why not include others who might be interested? So I contacted two friends, Val and Edwige, who both like to sew, have done some dyeing, and have sewing machines. Also, Edwige has a most wonderful book,Clothing from the Hands that Weave, (Anita Luvera Mayer) that reduces all ethnic clothing to the simple rectangle and gives wonderful ideas for making all kinds of simple garments. With the rayon, my dyes, the book, and our ideas and collaboration, I knew we could have some fun in designing and constructing rayon shirts, or other items of choice.
Last week we got together to get our fabric (to wash at home) and to decide on a color palette so I could have the dyes mixed and ready. Today we each dyed our 3 yards of rayon with our individual designs in mind.