Thursday, February 26, 2009

More Burmese textiles

Ni Doh
This is my friend Ni Doh Paw and her daughter.

Karen bag
This is the beautiful bag she made for me.

Karen bag
Here I am with the bag over my shoulder.

Karen bag
Here's a detail of the weaving -- the strap is a different pattern than the body of the bag.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A generous gift

Karen Skirt
This is the hand-made gift I've been meaning to share with you for several months. Schedules around here have not coincided enough to put a photographer & daylight & me in the same place with time to do this. Finally, today I just took some pictures inside, with a tripod.

For some time I've been helping with a small ESL class for women at my church. The women are mostly Karen (kuh-wren) from Burma, (aka Myanmar) via refugee camps in Thailand. I help a bit with these classes -- that's all. Which makes the generosity of my Karen friends all the more amazing. One day last summer, when I gave some of them a ride home after class, someone came running out of their apartment with a tape measure. Much giggling ensued, and protests by me, but measurements were taken, and some time later, I was presented with this beautiful skirt. My skirt has a zipper and a waistband -- the true Karen skirts are wrapped, I think.

This skirt was hand-woven and then sewed to fit, by my friends Ah Mu and Ni Doh Paw.

Here are some detail shots:
Karen skirt
Karen skirt
Karen Skirt

The mittens I just finished are for Ah Mu. I hope to make Ni Doh Paw some gloves soon. I'm slow enough that they'll have to be put away for next winter.

There are some pictures of the looms used for this weaving here.

If you want to know more about why these people are refugees, this video is a good start. It's not as graphic as some I've seen. It is, however, very sad.

More Karen textiles to come!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Two in the bush!

I've finished my Bird in Hand Mittens
Bird in Hand Mittens
Here's a detail of the birds on the thumb:
Bird in Hand Mittens
Bird in Hand Mittens
And the palms.

Bird in Hand Mittens, as designed by Kate Gilbert
Cascade Venezia Worsted yarn, 1 skein each color
US Size 1 needles

If I did it again? I'd use another yarn -- this one is soft and beautiful, but the red bleeds too much to use it with the white.

Made for a friend.