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Designer, artist Iwahashi to feature work at ISU Women’s Fair Nov. 11-12

Posted October 27, 2011

Local designer and artist, Gina Iwahashi, will feature her hand-dyed silk scarves, handkerchiefs, Japanese door hangings (Noren), Sarongs, wrap-skirts and more at the Idaho State University 2011 Women's Fair Nov. 11-12 in the Pond Student Union Ballroom.  

She is one of 40 vendors who will sell arts and crafts at the fair, from 10 to 5 p.m. on Nov. 11 and from 10 to 3 p.m. on Nov. 12.

Gina IwahashiIwahashi began dyeing fabrics eight years ago as a hobby and sold her work at the Pocatello Farmers' Market. Last February Iwahashi started her own business, Sumire Design, in which she also makes set gemstone necklaces and earrings.

"It's fun, I like it. I made a business out of something I enjoy doing," said Iwahashi.

Iwahashi's technique involves a time-consuming Japanese style called "Shibori." The silk fabric technique involves dipping the fabric in citric acid solution; bending, folding, and knotting the fabric; applying dye; wrapping the fabric in plastic wrap; and steaming the fabric for 30 minutes.

Designs by IwahashiAnother technique involves first washing, bending, folding, and knotting the fabric; then soaking it in a soda ash solution, then dyeing the fabric and letting it set for 12 hours before washing the final product.

To add unique designs to each piece of art, Iwahashi uses marbles, smooth pebbles and crochet thread and wraps the fabric in different ways to create different patterns and designs.

"It takes a lot of practice to learn how to fold the fabric and correctly wrap it with crochet thread to get the right designs," said Iwahashi.

To see more designs by Iwahashi, visit www.esty.com/shop/SumireDesign or stop by the ISU Women's Fair Nov. 11-12. 

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