What do you make? I enjoy having many creative threads! but I do have 2 distinct creative threads I have been following: 1) I am always trying to find ways to create empowering community art/creative projects that are inspiring, educational and playful. I always hope that these projects spark the curiosity of the participants, that soon realize that they are actually artists too! My most recent project was called "Living Room" here is an article about it 2) I create Fine art, that is also often Fiber Art that explores the Botanical world of Alabama. I use foraged materials often: leaves, rocks, bark, and I incorporate these materials with fabric, paper, and thread. I often, sew, weave or print make 2 dimensional and 3 dimensional work that become immersive environments which celebrate our natural world. I especially enjoy creating one of a kind botanical mono-prints, which i often get to print on Fabric! What do you like to sew? Their are so many things I like to sew, but I do find myself enjoying cutting apart my old crochet projects ( my UFO unfinished objects) and sewing them back together into crazy looking hats... I also really enjoy sewing natural materials together like Long Leaf Pine Needles into crazy intricate head dresses.
What do you do when you’re not at Bib & Tucker? Through out the week I work with my mom at her awesome businesses: Ingrid's Gymnastics and Trussville Gymnastics. I help manage a lot of things for the business and I also teach through out the week! When I have time away from Gymnastics I am always trying to play catch up with all the art projects I have going, but that need finishing! ( I think a lot of makers can identify with having a hard time " finishing" work)
What does Bib & Tucker mean to you? I believe that the Bib & Tucker Sew-op is a real life example that shows that Sewing and fiber can connect all of us! The sew-op is really made up of many different age groups and also made up of incredible people that come from many different places, back grounds and times.
This group welcomes your with open arms and it doesn't care if you know how to sew or not. This non-competitive, non hierarchical group of multi-generational, multi-cultural people wants you to give what ever you want to make a try! There are people with numerous skills ready and happy to pass on what they know to you. We have a common line _______ running through our minds and hearts--------- a common thread that leads us to you and to one another with creative curiosity!! This love of making!! This love of Fiber!! This love of taking the time to really take the time to sew stitch by stitch. And doing certain projects by hand because nothing can or ever will replace the human touch! Nothing compares to holding or experiencing something like a quilt or sweater that has been made by hand, which has the history of the time spent to make it, and the ancient and sacred history and tradition behind most any fiber art!
Who inspired you to start sewing? When did you start? There was a wise older woman named Miss Campbell who was temporarily staying in a room at my Grandmother's house on bed rest. We immediately connected and she became my first fiber mentor! I was about 6 years old. At the time she taught me a lot about crochet, but through our conversations it inspired me to want to learn more about different sewing techniques... I still have a LONG way to go before I am an "expert" at any of these incredible fiber traditions!
Where are you from?
I am from Birmingham, Alabama but in some ways I feel very multi-cultural and multi-national....I feel like my existence is from the positive result of having an international UAB scene: My Chilean mother was visiting her brother Tito, who was studying children's Cardiac surgery at UAB, and while on her visit to see him, she met my dad! What is your favorite thing about Woodlawn?
I enjoy that the heart of Woodlawn is located on the 1st Ave N the " Artery or Thread" into Birmingham! 1st ave north connects so many neighborhoods! for example I live in Roebuck Springs. 1st Ave N connects my neighborhood to East Lake and then to Woodlawn and then to Crestwood and then to Avondale and then to down town Birmingham and so forth! I also have a lot of memories of coming to Woodlawn growing up because my Grandmother's Church: Grace Episcopalian is located there. I am also often involved with the Woodlawn Street Market, and The Red Mountain Makers Space. What is your favorite color? Why?
I am being biased! but my name actually means " sky blue" in Italian and in Spanish so I like "Celeste" or in english I suppose you would call it " Light blue"
What school did you go to? What was your favorite subject or who was your favorite teacher? Elementary School: WJ Christian (Birmingham City School), Middle School: The Alabama School of Fine Arts.... college: The Cooper Union for The Advancement of Science and Art. My favorite teacher by far was/ is my Color teacher from college: Gian Berto Vanni. Not only did he teach me how to see color, he also taught me how to embrace life!
What is a story (try to be nice) that you can tell about another member?
One day Miss June got on to me about how I should really try next time to use a more loose stitch for a quilt block so I could take it out later... She thinks some times she is being "too hard" on people, but I love that she points out my mistakes and helps me get better at my craft! I also remember once I had to sew onto a quilt and Miss Darlena said... "Celeste, just remember sewing is just like Driving a car... so drive!" What is something you want to tell the other members about yourself, our community?
I look forward to creating with all of you and sharing my love of making and Fiber with you!