Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Maybe you had to be there

The High Fiber Diet group seems to be floundering. We have done a show at the Portland Japanese Garden every summer for many years. Last year they had nearly all new staff, including a new director. They moved our show to September and sales dropped considerably. This year they told us they were planning new kinds of uses for the pavilion, that would not include our show. So we are high and dry, with nothing on the horizon.

It's probably a blessing in disguise. We had become so dependent on that one show, that we have not seriously pursued other venues or shows for a long time. We were, honestly, in a Japanese Garden rut. Our meeting last month was poorly attended, but we talked a little about where we might go from here. We showed our new work. We chatted. It was, actually, quite an enjoyable meeting, with no deadlines looming. One of the members showed us some fabric teapots she had made. Goofy, for sure, but they kind of tickled everyone and we decided we would all make a fabric teapot in our own style and exhibit them at an upcoming meeting of Columbia Stitchery Guild, our sponsoring organization. I was pretty excited about figuring out how to make a fabric teapot. (non-functional, of course!)

The teapot idea was not met with enthusiasm by the members who had not been at the meeting. One told me, quite sourly, "I am not making a t-t-t-t-teapot!" Others just looked doubtful and said nothing. Gerrie wasn't very excited either. I may have talked her into it. She said, "Well, you think in 3-D, I don't!" I denied that, but maybe I do. She reminded me of my birds and my houses.

Anyway. I am making a teapot. I started with a little sketch.

Then I made a paper model. I always make patterns for things this way. I cut the paper and tape it loosely together to see if the shape is working. I can easily recut pieces that don't work and keep fiddling until it seems to be right. Then I can use the paper pieces for a pattern.

I actually decided my model was a little small, so I enlarged the pieces before I started cutting fabric.

Here are the parts I have been working on. I am never sure whether it will all fit together as planned. The design I made on the little sketch got changed. I think the leaves and bugs are a little more representative of what I do. Those are the sides and the handle.

So, I still think this a great idea and I can't wait to see what everyone else comes up with. If they do, that is. Maybe I'm the only one who hasn't come to her senses.


  1. You certainly DO think in 3-D, my dear! Most of your 2-D quilts, I'd say, suggest the third dimension.

  2. I for one would have jumped on the teapot bandwagon, if for nothing else than the challenge. Yours is looking very Terry already. I suppose those who don't think in 3-D could do a 2-D teapot or teapot-themed work. Did you hear that Gerrie?

  3. This is a great challenge! Is it possible to see photos of all the completed teapots? I once made a 5ft fabric toothbrush. Now, THAT was a challenge.

  4. Anonymous6:57 PM

    The shape of the paper pot looks very "Alice in Wonderland" and I love the whimsy. Hopefully the others will come around. This looks like a challenge that could knock anyone out of a rut. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product!

  5. Ohhhhhhh!!!! I like this teapot thing!

  6. Anonymous6:02 AM

    Love your teapot, and what a great challenge! Wish the groups I am with were so innovative with challenges.

  7. Hi Terry,
    Every time I look at your picture I think I know you. I used to work at Pratt & Larson tile. I saw the tea pot set against the tile and I swear it is from P&L. Do I know you?
    I now live in Vietnam and will be visiting PDX in Sept. I really enjoy your blog!

  8. I love the idea of the teapot. But then again I'm like you in the fact that I enjoy challenges and don't mind working in 3-D. Have you ever considered doing art dolls? I think you'd make some wonderful faces. I'd be interested in purchasing the teapot when your done with it, if you'd like to sell it.

    :) Russty

  9. Anonymous6:52 AM

    Great idea! and I love that you showed the before with your paper template. One of those "slap the forehead" moments for me, again.

    I want to make a teapot.

    People who say "no" without even trying something new are cheating themselves out of a creative experience. Too bad.

  10. The teapot is wonderful. If you find you would be willing to let it go, I'd love to buy it. I've always wanted one of your pieces.

  11. Well admittedly I'm an addicted tea maniac, but I just LOVE the idea of fabric teapots and just can't wait the see the end result! I'm enthralled with what you've done so far, very inspiring!

  12. Your teapot concept is adorable. I enjoyed visiting your blog and seeing all of your wonderful things.