Friday, May 28, 2010

Ivarene Farmer: I Love Burlap

I Love Burlap

While having coffee at Jones in Pasadena I saw a woman walk out with an armful of burlap sacks.  Curious, I inquired about them and was told to return to collect some the following week.  

 I needed to make some planters for the auction and had been in discussion for quite some time on what to use.  

The following week Jones donated 10 burlap bags.  Each individual bag was inspected by me to see where is it was made, what it contained, how it was stamped with it's identity.  Once used to transport un-roasted coffee from such faraway places as Indonesia and Brazil these bags appeared so rustic, yet evocative of the coutour gowns that Lucy and Ethel wore in the episode "Lucy get's a Paris Gown."

 I experimented with how to use them.  I lined them and began to fill them with soil  They became sculptural objects on their own, but as I began to fill them with plants they transformed.

Inspired by the offerings at Sunset Nursery in Silverlake I began to see themes.   
There was the Simon and Garfunkle:  " Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme"

Visconti :  Basil, oregano,tomato and borage... 

Baliwood:  lemongrass,cumin,mint, spicey basil ...

Well, you get the idea. 

Arms and face infused with a combination of soil and herbs I stood back and admired my work.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Silent sustainable transformation

Begrudgingly I agreed to decorate the kids school auction event.  I had no idea what inspired creative forces I would be privy to.

The theme was homegrown- meaning we needed to create the decorations from recycled items

First the book art.   Some of you may have trouble with the use of old books as objects of art.. the donated books were comprised of manuals, telephone books, maps, and old books with fabulously browned pages gathered from thrift stores.  Their yellowed, torn pages mostly filled with lusty gushings that I suspect caused some of the older children to work a bit slower.  The books that were still of good literary quality were given to the library.


Mostly created by busy students hands...

The mother tree was honored; shrouded in muslin it's dying trunk supported the beautiful pages

A frame normally used to sift dirt in the gardens of learning was used to create the crown of the book art chandelier in the tent

Tree's were swathed in contrasting remnants of fabric

Tables laid with books, recycled jars with votives and muslin cloth

A hugely collaborative effort created a fabulous event

feeling incredibly proud I dawned my fabulous Givenchy inspired dress made of kraft paper, found tossed aside on the field, Dior ribbon and graffiti art by Rob Reger of Emily the Strange...and off I went...

photo by Joyce Brody

Friday, May 7, 2010

Tucking in to a Bloomsbury Life with a spot of Rose Petal Jelly

Friday I attended a cocktail reception for my friend and fellow blogger Lisa Borgnes. The fete was in celebration of her show " Stitching up the  Noughties" held at the Acme Gallery in Beverly Hills.  Lisa composed provocative couplets which she then traditional stitched on burlap.  The samplers depict the post modern woman's many dilema's, obsessions and lifestyles. They are ironic, poetic and sublime.  Her clever ability to rhyme rubies and perky boobies had me in stitches.  

photo's by Lisa Borgnes

Lisa's blog is a constant inspiration to me. I look forward to each of her postings.

 Lisa has impeccable style, her home is as chic and warm as she is, each time I visit gives me impetius to go fix up a new corner in our house.  Often I am greeted with something decadent and special. Yummy tea, scones,and always clever conversation... Several visits back I not only walked out with a lighthouse shaped canister of Noirmoutier Sel marin she purchased while in France, but was also semi-perminently loaned a chic floral 60's dress I intend to wear this summer.  

It was Lisa that turned me on to the Fortnum and Mason rose petal jelly that  I can never get enough of.

Lisa's ability to uncover the most unique country homes is uncanny..Her last posting had me up until midnight sorting through all the homes for lease on the landmark trust site.

Another favorite was her editorialized vintage photographs of a child long ago in the English countryside.

 Recently I became so engrossed with a link to the free biography of the Marquess of Bath I nearly forgot to pick up my kids from school.

I dare you to go look... but heed my warning it is seductive -you may not return for hours