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Tilonia is a mission-driven, social enterprise developing the entrepreneurial skills and business capacity of artisan enterprises managed and owned by rural artisans in India.

The Tilonia artisan collections feature home textiles, women’s accessories and gifts suitable for contemporary decorative styles while still reflective of Indian craft traditions. Bring the color and spice of India to your home!

Mission:  Tilonia, takes its name from Tilonia, the small village in Rajasthan that is the home of the Barefoot College. Since 1972, the College has worked to improve the quality of life of the poorest of the poor, who make less than $1 a day. The Barefoot College trains the poorest of the poor to become “Barefoot” professionals who develop their own communities. These semi-literate women and men from poor rural communities become Barefoot solar engineers, water engineers, architects, teachers, midwives and paramedics creating their own solutions to meet basic needs for water, electricity, housing, health, education and income.

Working in conjunction with the Barefoot College, Friends of Tilonia, Inc. has developed for the sale of handcrafted bedding, accessories and gift items produced by nearly 800 artisans in villages where the College and its affiliates operate. We are replicating this “Barefoot” model by developing Barefoot e-commerce managers who operate the web-based platform and online store, manage and sustain the enterprise, and enjoy the economic benefit of a successful business operation.

Location:  India
Online shop:  Tilonia
   Avani Kumaon
   Barefoot College
   Designing Hope
Languages spoken:  English, Hindi

Textiles from Tilonia

Tags:  Natural Dyes, Blockprint, Woven, Wild Silk, Peace Silk, Weaving, Bag, Scarf, Tablecloth, Bedding

Long Ridge Farm

I am Nancy Zeller, shepherdess and natural dyer. I have co-owned and operated Long Ridge Farm since 1995 and have raised CVM/Romeldale sheep, the rarest breed of sheep in North America, since 2000. My sheep yield a fine wool of 26 microns or less, with a very defined crimp.

I offer a line of yarns I created using their wool along with other precious fibers. I also dye fabrics in accessory pieces as well as yardage.

My passion for natural dyeing began in 2005. I have never used synthetic dyes and plan to remain true to my passion. Through an ongoing process of combining classroom learning with experimentation I have succeeded in achieving rich, strong color from natural dyes and only two non-metal mordants.

My quest is ever-changing, challenging and exciting with regard to natural color and my work.

My studio is located on the farm and I am available by appointment.

Mission:  Through a combined passion for raising my flock of CVM/Romeldale sheep and natural dyeing I am constantly exploring technique and innovation when appling color to cloth and fiber.  Both my rarest breed of sheep and natural dyes face extinction so I am ever conscious of their protection and care. I am turning more to working with bio-regional dyestuffs and ways to coax their colors to my work.

Location:  Westmoreland, New Hampshire, USA
Online shop:  Long Ridge Farm
Social Media:  LinkedIn
Languages spoken:  English

Natural, hand dyed yarns from Long Ridge Farm sheep.

Candy Meacham - Fiber Art

Stories in wool.  I create handwoven, narrative blankets drawing inspiration from my dreams, my childhood, the season, stories of my students and collaboration with the customer as well as the spirit of the project as it progresses.  I love color and handling the fibers themselves, and I use needle felting to physically apply color and design to the finished weaving.

Artist's statement:  My mission is just an extension of what I have described above.  It is to continue to create these stories and to find the audience who truly wants to listen to each one or who would like to create with me their own tall tale told in fiber.

Location:  Bellingham, Washington, USA
Social Media:  Facebook
Languages spoken:  English, Spanish

"Spirit Rising"  Narrative Woven Blanket by Candy Meacham

Tags:  weaving, needle felting, fiber art, blankets, handwoven, art, color, design, narrative, collaboration


Celeste Nossiter
I've always loved color and was trained as an abstract painter. But once I discovered Fair Isle and stranding techniques in knitting, a whole new world of creativity opened up to me.  

My love of world travel has led me to study ethnic knitting motifs and their inter-connectedness through historic trade routes. After my first visit to Turkey I fell in love with both Ottoman and tribal textiles as well as the open-heartedness of the people. I love translating ethnic textile motifs into knitted patterns and experimenting with color. My other love is teaching knitting and encouraging the artist in each of us to come out and play.

Artist's statement:  My goals are:  to inspire other knitters to experiment with color and pattern to create their own unique designs; to translate traditional ethnic motifs into knitted patterns and publish them in a variety of media.

I am available to travel to teach workshops on Intro to Stranded Knitting, Designing your Own Vest, Interpreting Ethnic Motifs into Knitting Designs and Knitting a Turkish-inspired Stranded Hat. I can also work with your yarn to design sale-able knitting patterns.

Location:  Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
Memberships:  Dropped Stitch Knitting Guild
Social Media:  Ravelry
Languages spoken:  English, French, some Spanish, learning Turkish

Knitting classes and designs by Knittingceleste.

Tags:  Turkish textiles; stranded knitting; Fair Isle; Central Asian textiles; suzanis; kilim rugs; Ottoman embroidery; Islamic art

In Memorium: TAFA Member Cindy Wills Dies of Cancer

In June, Cindy posted on her blog:

Sometime in 2007 I began keeping this blog. The idea was to share my recent creations without having to list each item for sale. I probably had hopes of doing something creative with it, too. April 6, 2011, I was diagnosed with cancer. My doctor referred to it as the nasty, weird kind of cancer. Since the beginning of April I have had 3 surgeries. I truly prefer to bring light and smiles into this world as enough of everything else already exists.

There were a couple more posts then, nothing.  Nothing on her facebook page either.  Cindy had become an online friend and I kept checking periodically to see how she was doing.  Today I did a little more digging and was saddened to find her obituary, stating that she passed away in September.  

One of her last blog posts has a few photos of her:

Cindy Wills, 1956

Cindy Wills, 1978

Cindy Wills 1994

Cindy was extremely talented and I really liked her work.  She was a rug hooker:

Hooked Rug by Cindy Wills

Her collages were my favorites:

And, her best selling items on Etsy were rubber stamps that she had made of her drawings:

Cindy was the youngest daughter of Bob Wills, the famous singer who is known for his Western Swing, music which I thoroughly enjoy.  Cindy had started a group on facebook which posted Swing music regularly.  Her dad is the one dancing around the stage:

I am so saddened by the knowledge of Cindy's passing.  I find it distressing that there was so little about her on the web.  Yes, our time here is short, but she made such an impact on me in such a short time that I would think her family and friends would have posted more about her on the web or alerted the rest of us who followed her on her blog and on facebook that she had died...  Maybe they didn't have her passwords?  My father recently said that is something I should do, keep a list of my online places and passwords so that if something happens to me, someone might be able to access my sites.  Very true...  

I have had so many friends in the last two years who have come down with life threatening illnesses and cancer, but most have been doing so well that I just assumed Cindy would bounce back up.  Well, she didn't.  Fare ye well, Cindy!

“I see my life and all the places I have lived as a colorful patchwork quilt.” – Cindy Wills Marcrum (1/15/1955-9/12/2011)

From her obituary:

Surrounded by family and prayers, Cindy Wills Marcrum passed away on Monday, September 12 at 11:23pm. Cindy was born in Sacramento, CA on January 15, 1955. She was the youngest child of Bob and Betty Wills, mother of sons Austin and Aaron, and wife of Herschel (Rick) Marcrum.

Bob Wills (1905-1975) was the creative force behind the American music form known as Western Swing and, artist, Cindy Wills, was his daughter. She was born with the marvelous talents of an artist and produced beautiful works throughout her life. In 1999, her father was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Cindy traveled to New York City to accept the award. She served on the board of directors of the Bob Wills Heritage Foundation, Inc.and was dedicated to preserving her family’s legacy.

“I see my life and all the places I have lived as a colorful patchwork quilt,” she would say, “And whether I am creating portrait, landscape or modern paintings; hand-hooked wool rugs; stamp designs, or collages, my inspiration has always ultimately reflected at least a thread of that patchwork.”

 In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations made in Cindy's name to The Bob Wills Heritage Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 1945, Burleson, Texas 76097.

HG handmade - Heike Gerbig

I´m a writer who some years back started turning textile artist. Being used to weaving words and embroider them over and over, this step turned out to be an easy and very consistent one.

Not surprisingly, there are quite a lot of words to be found in my textile and mixed-media work - machine stitched, hand embroidered, taken from old books...

So, I still tell stories –  to myself, in the first place - but I´d be glad if you can hear them, too…

Artist's statement:  I aim at creating textile pieces and mixed-media artwork that might have a calming quality, being interesting nevertheless, informative, and inspiring - each of them is one-of-a-kind...

Location:  Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Online shops:  
Blog:  gerdiary
Languages spoken:  English, German

Stitched and Mixed Media by Heike Gerbig

Tags:  Stitched stories, mixed media artwork, freehand embroidery, textile creatures, textile jewelry, art to wear


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