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A Breath of Inspiration at the Anna Leonowens Gallery

By Faye Morrison

meisen kimono2I wandered down to NSCAD last evening at the behest of my daughter who wanted me to check out the latest exhibit at the Anna Leonowens Gallery. My daughter attended the Asian Studies Program at Saint Mary’s University and spent a year attending Sapporo University, Hokkaido, Japan to perfect her Japanese language abilities. As with most youth today, she moved elsewhere to find employment.  As I have an interest in textiles she felt I would have an appreciation for this exhibit and describe it to her as she couldn’t attend.

The exhibit includes silk kimonos made from a fabric silk that is hand stamped on both sides and was made in family homes as a source of outside income. Only about 4 or 5 families remain who can do this type of work.  This type of kimono uses a method of applying the dye directly to the warf and weft threads prior to weaving and makes use of synthetic dyes for brighter vibrant colors using a method called Meisen. The textiles were less expensive to make and durable. They could be worn for more than one generation and refashioned for more than one person.

meisen kimono1This silk textile was made popular between 1910 and 1950 and textile artists went to Lyon, France to learn how to do the Meisen technique. Many of the designs chosen were selected from competitions of art students held throughout the various prefectures of Japan.  The influence of such artists of the early twentieth century and abstract Cubism  can be clearly visualized although the designs are clearly Japanese. The abstract designs are bold and colorful, just the thing to start off a new student year while the hint of fall with the last warmth of summer prevails.

This exhibit was brought to the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design from the personal collection of Haruko Watanabe and organized by Naoko Furue and Nancy Price. Below is a sample of a poster of a wonderful kimono that was worn during the opening reception and I encourage you to view this exhibit which is being held from Sept 16-27, 2014 at NSCAD University, Halifax located in the Anna Leonowens Gallery, Granville Mall, Halifax, NS

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2014 in Events

 

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Nova Scotia Fibre Arts Festival

From Anita…

At our first Guild meeting of the 2014-15 year, Anita told us about the Nova Scotia Fibre Arts festival. She only had a few brochures with her but here is the information online at their site.

http://www.fibreartsfestival.com/

The festival is on from Tuesday, October 14th to Saturday, October 18th. It is in Amherst, Nova Scotia. Here is a little promotional video they have.

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2014 in Events

 

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Class and Learning Options Outside the Guild

Courtesy of research by Tory and Marcia…

Guild Classes

The Guild had just announced our classes for 2014-15. These two are guaranteed, plus other potential ones to be determined.

  1. Pocket Techniques, with Anneke Henderson (Oct 4, 2014)
  2. Making a Body Double, with Josée (Nov 15, 2014)

However, there are many other options for classes around the Halifax area, as well as online. There are also many other learning resources besides classes, where there is no interaction involved but just instructions. The following list of sewing related resources might interest you.

Local Classes (Halifax area)

You might consider these local options for classes in the Halifax Regional Municipality and Nova Scotia area:

Continental Classes

If you were willing to travel for some classes, treating it as either a serious trip or vacation, you might want to consider these options:

Online Classes and General Instructions

These sites offer classes and/or general instructions online:

There are also plenty of other YouTube channels you may want to search for to find instructional videos. For video instruction, you might actually be better off searching from the YouTube site, rather than using a search engine like Google, Yahoo or Bing.

Blogs

Blogs tend to be are more personally produced instruction, compared to business or professional like instruction, although some blogs are quite phenomenal. They also tend to be more a mish mash of topics and may not be as well organized to find specific items like sewing instruction videos. But those things can add a personal touch and connection business sites tend not to have, and be more entertaining with a real life touch to them. It really depends on what you like. Here are some Guild Members like a lot:

When you read blogs, be sure to look around, often on the side, for links to the authors’ favourite sites, blogs and such. Some will likely be related to sewing and they can serve as your lead to find out more of what is out there! If you liked the authors’ blog, chances are, you’ll like his/her taste for other enjoyable and/or useful blogs, too!

Share Your Favourite Sewing Resources with Us!

If you know of great class and/or instructional resources not mentioned here, please do let us know. We will update this post, as well as our Classes page on this site. Thank you.

 
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Posted by on September 9, 2014 in Classes, Contribution Requests, Resources, Reviews, Sites

 

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Class — Pocket Technique, with Anneke Henderson

Date October 4, 2014
Time 10:00 AM to 4:30PM (set-up at 9:30)
Where Halifax Christian Church, 51 Farnham Rd Gate
(see map below)
Maximum number of students 8
Cost $35

  
Content

There are at least 4 pocket styles used on/in tailored garments that could be covered; the double welt, double welt with flap, single welt inside pocket, chest welt pocket, and a fully enclosed single welt pocket that I use on men’s unlined pants. If time allows, we could also look at the bound buttonhole, which is really just a variation on the welt theme. I love those buttonholes- so clean and classic!

 
Materials Required

Sewing machine and kit (including scissors, seam ripper, sewing needles, straight pins, thread) and scrap pieces of wool to practice techniques on. Interfacing will be supplied.

There will be a fair bit of pressing, so if you wish to bring along a good steam iron and portable board, this would come in handy. Irons and ironing boards will be available in class.

 
Prerequisite

For intermediate sewers. The student should have a good basic knowledge of sewing garments.

 
Teacher’s Biography

Anneke Henderson teaches in the Costume Studies program and is Head of Wardrobe for the Fountain School of Performing Arts. Her main areas of focus are on the art of men’s tailoring, costume in performance, and costume technology. After receiving her undergraduate degree from Dalhousie University, Anneke relocated to Toronto where she acquired design education at Ryerson University and George Brown University. She produced and retailed original designs under the AnnekeJans label, owning and operating successful businesses in Toronto and Halifax.

In 2005 Anneke received her MFA in Textiles from NSCAD University in Halifax and was Assistant Professor in the Textile Department before joining the Department of Theatre at Dalhousie in 2008. Her career includes over 25 years of experience and expertise in the clothing arts. She has been teaching in the area of clothing and textile since 1998, including conceptual design, technical and applied techniques, textile manipulation, design theory, costume history, contemporary and historical tailoring, and costume in performance.


Please click here for other classes and more information on classes, including registration.

 
Map

 
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Posted by on September 5, 2014 in Classes

 

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Class — Making a Body Double, with Josée

Date November 15, 2014
Time 10:00 AM to 4:30PM (set-up at 9:30)
Where Halifax Christian Church, 51 Farnham Rd Gate
Maximum number of students 12
Cost $35

 
Content

This is a hands-on workshop to make your own body double using packing tape.  It takes about 3 hours to be taped up, during which time you will not be able to move much. You must also be comfortable at being touched a lot during the whole process. In groups of 2, you will have the chance to be “taped up” and then return the favour. At the end of the day, you will have your own taped shell to take home, with ideas on how to complete the body double at home.

 
Materials Required

Bring 2-3 garbage bags for the foundation. Make sure you are wearing your most accurately fitting undergarments. All other materials will be supplied.

 
Prerequisite

None

 
Teacher’s Biography

Josée Poupart has made two body double in her sewing career.


Please click here for other classes and more information on classes, including registration.

 
Map

 
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Posted by on September 5, 2014 in Classes

 
 
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