Clay and Fabric, Seams to Match

The pot is not Tuscan pottery, but it’s a start.

I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of making pots or vessels, but clay is very intimidating to me. Fabric is easier, less messy and best of all, needs no firing. As much as I’ve been more careful with the earth pigments, I do like how my boring old linen bag turned out. the perfect canvas to try some clay inspired fabric pot.

It’s not finished yet (like everything I do), but with more pattern experimentation and tweaking, it has potential. This one will do nicely as a flower pot.  I clearly have to experiment with curved forms, bias cut and patchwork. I like the idea of making “foldable pots”. And once they are stiffened with a bit of cornstarch or supported by a glass or vase they should stand tall and proud. I do like a bit of “floppyness” with these containers, but not too much.

For more inspiration from the “real” things, I rummaged through my cupboard. Here is my favorite mug from local potter Julie Crosby, which has the most wonderful Wabi-Sabi feel to it. It is slightly egg shaped, has a beautiful indigo blue glaze inside and makes me think of Japan every time I look at it and hold it in my hands.

I also rummaged the internet and here are some potters I find inspiring:

Koji Takagi:

And Shimpei Mawatari:

I also think the one below  by Maria Kristofferson is interesting and thought immediately of embroidery. I’m also interested in trying to wax some fabric using the wax as glaze, making encaustic vessels.

And last but not least Karin Eriksson‘s wonderful teacups:

Making more teacups using finely printed muslin or vintage flower fabric would look pretty, n’est pas?

Now I just need a nice long retreat in the woods without any internet to explore all of the above with my hands, rather than my head.

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7 Responses to “Clay and Fabric, Seams to Match”

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  1. Now you’re talking my language. I love clay and fabric, too. Wednesdays are my favorite days. I volunteer to sew lap quilts for seniors from 7-11am and at night I go to a community clay club. We raku (fire) twice a night. All clay, glazes, firing, everything-FREE! It’s incredible.
    One of my favorite clay artists, Josie Jurczenia, combines her love of sewing with her love of clay. She had a childrens line of clothing, called Sweet Potatoes, for many, many years. After retiring from the business, she started working in clay, in her Berkeley warehouse, with two other clay artists, Rae Dunn and Christa Asada. They are all phenomenal.
    Josie’s style is constantly on the move, but sometimes she will “stitch” and “dart” her pieces. Here is a link to her blog-

  2. Oops. I got so busy gas bagging away, I forgot to tell how much I liked your piece. Your distinct style comes through in your work, no matter what the medium. This vase is very lovely.
    Once you find someone in your area to fire for you (and that shouldn’t be too hard), if you are interested in pursuing ceramics, you can make clay pieces in very much the same way you have made your fabric pieces.

  3. kathrin says:

    Aw, thanks so much. I will check out the pottery artists you mention. You are truly multi-faceted: tap dance, quilting and now pottery. Wish you had a blog!

  4. treena says:

    your pot is absolutely gorgeous and I wouldn’t change a thing!

    i love the jux between the texture and colors of the cloth and the stitching…

    more, more! :-)

  5. cucicucicoo says:

    your pot looks fantastic! and what gorgeous pottery! :) lisa

  6. kathrin says:

    Thanks so much Lisa!

  7. kathrin says:

    Thanks a lot Treena. I’ll make more….

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