Guest Blog post from Lancaster & Cornish
Wendy Kotenko is a Senior Technician from The Fashion and Textiles Institute of Falmouth University. In 2002 Wendy was fortunate to study at the prefectural University of arts in Okinawa, Japan. In Okinawa and the surrounding islands there are many weaving workshops that continue the traditional weaving and dyeing techniques unique to each area.
Among them are Okinawan Kasuri textile, where warp and weft yarns are tied before dyeing, to create areas that resist the dye to create patterns and Miyako Jofu, a ramie woven textile, where the yarn is made from a labour intensive process of stripping the fibre, hand plying and spinning. The weaving and dyeing practiced there demonstrate high levels of skill and dedication to traditional techniques and the communal commitment to the continuation and preservation of the traditional textiles.
Wendy continues to explore and practice some of the skills that Master artisans such as Ginko Le Bars, weaving tutor at Okinawa Prefectural University of arts and director of the Shuri-Ori workshops in Okinawa kindly shared with her. Wendy feels that by sharing something of the experience that she had in Okinawa, by passing on knowledge and practice of the textile techniques, she is also sharing the exquisiteness and joy of Okinawan textiles.
Wendy has recently won the Bristol cloth award with her design chosen to be the Bristol cloth this year. The award was a collaboration between the Bristol Textile Quarter, Bristol Weaving Mill, Fernhill Farm, Botanical Inks and the Bristol Green Lab. The cloth will be shown in an eco- fashion event called Love the future of fashion’ in Bristol on November 11.
Selvedge are fortunate to have Wendy as one of their tutors at the Lancaster & Cornish hosted workshop in Cornwall next March ‘Indigo and The Art of Natural Dyeing’ Wendy will guide us through her experiences of the natural dyes in the Okinawa region of Japan illustrated by photographs and demonstrations of weaving practices. Wendy will also demonstrate table-loom weaving and tapestry weaving with naturally dyed yarns which pupils will also have the opportunity to try.
Book the course via our Selvedge events listings:INDIGO AND THE ART OF NATURAL DYEING CORNWALL, 14 – 18 MARCH 2016