The glorious state of Virginia is replete with awesome natural phenomena, including of course, its wondrous countryside. On a recent visit there to hang out with siblings, I saw things in the aforementioned phenomena — fabric and fashion things. Yup, that’s me – I tend to equate wondrous, visceral experiences with things like sewing, fabric and fashion. I’m kind of shallow that way. For me, all those shallow things evoke emotional responses. Does sewing, fashion and fabulous fabric find you in an other worldly state?
Take a look and tell me what you see in these images. Please excuse the fuzziness in certain pictures – blame the iPhone. The good pictures were shot by my family:
1. The awesome Luray Caverns in Virginia yielded the most enriching experience ever. I saw draped, diaphanous fabric in rock formations created by movements of natural spring water over the centuries. I saw fringe, and I saw button-like formations. The formation on the right looks more like a fried egg, though – sunny side up. There are more (probably better) images and information about the Luray Caverns online. And… there is a cavern organ which plays music! Well, the stalactites play the music when prodded by a mechanism at the right intervals. Might I add that the caverns are privately owned.
2. The flora (and fauna) in the celebrated Virginia countryside yielded carpets of wildflowers, including the gorgeous Queen Anne’s Lace. The name says it all – it truly evokes images of beautiful, delicate lace. I got a sudden urge to go buy some pretty white lace. I don’t see many Queen Anne’s Lace in my area, unless someone has planted them in their garden.
3. My brother and sis-in-law have this natural white coral sitting on their shelf. At first glance I thought silk flowers were used in the arrangement. But no! This was a whole natural coral piece! Wow.
4. Back to Texas — last year, after excessive rains, these mushrooms sprouted in my front yard. I had never ever seen mushrooms like these – anywhere. The white one at left sprouted inside a flower pot. Was I crazy, or does this not look like an haute couture, diaphanous, pleated skirt? The middle mushroom looks like a bouffant, balloon skirt. The yellow/pink mushroom sprouted in the grass, and did not remind me of any fabric but it did bring to mind some childhood fairy tales with “fairy” mushroom illustrations in vivid colors.
I used to pooh-pooh fashion designers’ claims that their work was inspired by nature — I think I should stop pooh-poohing now. What are your thoughts on this? Do you think I’ve been around fabric for too long? Do you see sewing stuff in natural elements?
May the sewing gods be with you….
6 thoughts on “I See Nature, I See #Fabric….”
Good morning, Samina. Yes, I do see beauty in nature that I would love to wear myself. When I was ten years old, I had a balloon dress (like your mushroom photo) fitted on top, but rounder shaped on the bottom. It was a lovely, dark brown with darker lined veins running through the material. The shoulders were caped. I was sad to grow out of it and it was handed down to another child. I wish it had been kept and stored.
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Good morning! So glad to see I’m not the only one who is so fabric and fashion obsessed. I wonder what other hobby obsessed people see in natural phenomena…..
I see fabric or garments in textures all the time. Every time I’m in an airplane I see quilts out the window, free form blocks divided by ribbons of water and highways. The grassy meadows in the Wisconsin spring look like velvet. And I always want a jacket in the colors of our fall foliage. I love your photo of Queen Anne’s Lace. Around here people pull it out of their gardens as weeds, but I have always liked the look. And I can totally see the skirt in the mushroom!
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I tried to comment but I don’t see my paragraph. Apologies if this gets duplicated! I tried to remember what I wrote the first time. I see the ground from an airplane and thing quilts, freeform piecing divided by water and roads. I see your couture skirt in the mushroom and the fringe in the cavern. In Wisconsin there is so much green in the spring that the fields remind me of velvet. And the fall foliage always makes me want a corduroy jacket in just those oranges and reds!
Hi Sue! This blog is set up where the comments are approved by the moderator – me! I did not get the notification until now.
I should take a trip to Wisconsin in spring or fall. It sounds gorgeous. Here in Texas, there are not any distinct seasons. I mean, some trees begin to turn the leaves in January!!
I see inspiration for fabric prints in flowers and zoo animals. How fascinating that you’ve found a connection to fabric from caverns and mushrooms. The fluted edges of the coral are gorgeous, and remind me of a lettuce edge on knits.