drooling review: course horse and shibori dyeing at the textile arts center

omg, you guys, i am a little starstruck and still full of energy and excitement. (and also, maybe, watching too many CW re-runs? WHO SAYS OMG?!)

last night i snuck out of work early at the invitation of evan and katie of course horse to participate in a demo class highlighting a (to me) brand-new asset in my very backyard:  the textile arts center and its new space in manhattan.  actually, that is exactly the goal of course horse:  to provide folks like me, who love classes and new chances to meet people, a single repository where all the classes in a particular city are listed by category.  they are currently only operational in manhattan, but are planning to launch an LA site soon, with other cities to follow.

friends, i am a class…well, whore is really the best word.  i’m not a people person, but classes are (for me) the hands-down best way to both learn about something new and meet new people who share that passion.  since i moved to NYC over six years ago, i have taken classes and occasionally worked as a TA at places like NYU, International Center of Photography, FIT and the New School, but never found an easy way to track down the kind of specialized crafting classes i was really after.


course horse, obviously geared for folks like us, is trying to provide the answer to that conundrum, and introduced themselves to some of the local sewing community by way of a wonderful demo class in shibori dyeing techniques at the textile arts center.

it’s really hard to pinpoint was the best part of last evening was.  you know i’ve been dabbling in dyeing recently, and shibori is really just like tie-dyeing, only it sounds less like a summer camp activity when you describe it.  (and more like you actually know what you are talking about)  even better, evan and katie did a lovely job of making us feel welcome in the space, providing both alcohol AND snacks.

but honestly, as is really always the case, the best bit was “meeting” so many people i already know and admire.  i think evan and katie, as well as our instructor, were quite taken aback at how quickly the conversations started and flowed.  we sort of took off running as soon as the demonstration was complete, eager to try out the techniques and continue comparing notes.


i am not sure who was the best dye-ist, but it was definitely either nettie (one awesome and talented lady) or ginger (of mood sewing network fame, cute as a button and as sweet as her namesake).  i nearly embarrassed myself from the sheer quantity of gushing i did over clio’s leather jacket posts.  and daughter fish, sporting what had to be one of her patented perfect knit tops with a super-cute back cowl, was even better company than i remembered from our brief meeting at last year’s TSW meetup.  the only cancellation was our beloved oona, but i think we all know why.


obviously, i was invited to participate in the class for free in the hopes that i would share the experience. happily, i am thrilled to do so because the site (and the textile arts center) are both brilliant resources for this craft-crazed new yorker.

it was just wonderful to be surrounded by such supportive, interesting and talented people, all from different backgrounds and all of whom i think remind us what we love about the online sewing community:  all are welcome.  anything goes.  come as you are and share what you know.  i left full of energy, eager to get back to work.  despite my intentions and hopes, i haven’t touched my machine in a month, and i feel like part of me is missing.  (which, of course, is true.)

i already have a wish list of classes i’d like to try at TAC, and several categories of offerings to pore through over at course horse.  what might some of your favorites be?

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6 Responses to drooling review: course horse and shibori dyeing at the textile arts center

  1. gingermakes says:

    It was so, so nice to meet you! Hanging out with you awesome gals *might* have been more fun than dyeing… and that’s saying something! Hope we can meet up again soon! 🙂

  2. Pingback: Shibori and Indigo | Sown Brooklyn

  3. Clio says:

    It was awesome to meet you – and what a great class!! I’m pretty amazed that none of us ended up with blue hair or clothing after the conversation about hair dyeing with natural dyes.
    (Sadly, I am exactly the kind of dork that says OMG. heh heh)

  4. oonaballoona says:

    those pieces are bee-yoo-tiful!!! i was so sad to miss it, y’all’s recap posts are making me happy:))

  5. megthegrand says:

    These recap posts are all so amazing!! What a fabulous thing to be learning with some others from the community 🙂 Do you think you’ll be working some shibori into your upcoming projects?

    • puu says:

      i absolutely think that on my next dyeing session i will be incorporating shibori. for the demo class, we used indigo, but i will probably set up my kit of reactive dyes and use those…a little more color, and easier to apply.

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