My Material Life

Hand-Sewn Silk Flower

This is a great trick to have up your sleeve.  I found it on the Threads magazine site when I was searching for my favorite article on sewing knits for you.  Just as I was missing the magazine as I’d remembered it from the past, I found something really cool from Kenneth D. King.  I didn’t realize he was a contributor.  I took a class with him back in the 90s in Los Altos and later bought his book called Cool Tricks (recently updated with a new title, Cool Couture).  I was so inspired when I saw these instructions here yesterday, that I decided to make my own flower last night (that’s it above).  Since seeing Kenneth’s name takes me back to the 90s, I guess it’s fitting that I used some leftover silk dupioni from a skirt I made for a brother-in-law’s fancy Manhattan wedding in 1996.

I still have that skirt.  I loved making it.  I remember during the time when I was sewing it – maybe just falling asleep or waking up – I’d think about that skirt and it made me so happy.  The only problem was that I really overdosed on the silk and pastel shades and with the skirt, top, and wrap together I looked like a rainbow sherbet ice cream cone.

That’s my first issue of Threads from December 1987/January 1988.  Can you believe those gloves?  What a great photo.  Now Threads is devoted to sewing, but it used to cover a variety of textile arts from around the world.  It’s still a high quality publication, though, and now that I know that it’s Kenneth’s work on the cover of the current issue I just might have to pick up a copy.

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