Friday, January 27, 2012
Art of Craft event this weekend! Three days of creative workshops taught by friends and artists from near and far. If you haven't been to a workshop at French General and would like to try one - this is the perfect time. Project based classes, each three hours long and all the materials are provided. We still have a couple of spots left and would love to have you join us! Please call the shop to sign up and we'll save you a seat!
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Until a week ago, when I was sorting through a pile of old fabric from France, looking for inspiration for our new line, and found the coat. The first thing I did, was put it on and was instantly reminded how much we laughed that summer in France when Molly would wear the coat - just to stay warm at night! We made up fanciful stories about the old, grand chateau owner, who had no heat and resorted to having one of his 18th century quilts made into a robe or smoking jacket...just to stay warm.
An ikat fabric is woven using a very complicated dyeing technique. The dyes are applied to the yarns prior to weaving which will create designs on the finished fabric. Depending on the pattern, specific areas of the warp and/or weft threads are are protected from dye to prevent them from absorbing color. When the threads are dyed, each thread will have different color pattern along its length. When the threads are ready for weaving, each thread has to be lined up perfectly on the loom. The warp thread is first to be set on to the loom, and then one must keep all threads in position very carefully to achieve the desired pattern in the final weaving of the textile. There is natural movement in these threads, which give an slightly feathered, or blurred look to the final textile.
To say I was blown away - is to put it mildly! Funny how one little textile can create so much excitement and then spur me on to search for as much information as I can get my hands on. The funniest part of the magic coat story is that I would have never known the little gem that was hiding inside had I not been curious...and taken the coat apart. So, I guess the moral of this story is....always look deeper, there may be something beautiful hiding inside!
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Friday, January 13, 2012
Wow - I am overwhelmed by the honesty and insight from so many people who left comments. Thank you for digging deep and writing down your desires, dreams and fears. To our lucky winner Kate, I think at one point in all of our lives we have all felt this way - the good news is, once you leave behind the fear of being yourself, you will soar and become the person you were meant to be. Good luck!
Monday, January 09, 2012
For the past few years, we've had a jewelry club at French General called Un, Deux, Trois, which consists of a necklace, bracelet and earring kit that can be worn together. It's been a fun run and we've designed over 40 sets that have been filled with vintage glass, old brass findings and charms.
But, alas, all good things must come to an end...the Un, Deux, Trois Club will be around for just three more months. If you would like to sign up for our last three months, you have one more chance!
In celebration of something new and exciting coming from something old, we thought we would give away our January Un, Deux, Trois Kit. The Fleurs de Nuit kit has all the soft shades of old white accented with brass flowers and old Japanese glass pearls. You need just a couple of jewelry tools and a bit of glue to create this set of jewelry.
Leave us a comment about what you are leaving behind to make way for something new in 2012 - we'll chose one lucky winner on Friday, January 13th.
Thursday, January 05, 2012
The last time I looked at a calendar it was December 21st...I was throwing our annual tamale party - which had been scaled down due to the fact that everyone I knew was sick or about to be sick or just getting over the sickness. How does that always happen right around the holidays??
It was just that kind of Christmas. Christmas Eve at my parent's house and a couple of weeks spent walking, talking, eating and relaxing. A friend texted me and said, "You're not in college anymore Kaari - you can't just move home for two weeks!" But I said - yes, yes you can. All seven of us moved home for the long haul.
My parent's live near the beach, so a lot of time is just spent looking south out their windows, towards Catalina Island. It's an amazing view - it's hard to take for granted. "Oh look there goes another pod of dolphins...or whales..." You can understand why we don't get much done - besides walking the beach, sitting at the kitchen table, eating and looking out the windows.
After doing this for two weeks, you start to forget about regular life. You forget about work, school, deadlines and any sort of stress. It's a great way to start the year - I highly recommend it. Then New Year's rolls around and I thought I had everything back in order only to end up cancelling our New Year's Dinner because there were too many sick guests! Welcome 2012!