My Featured Etsy Artist of the week is Judy of RabbitWhiskers - just in time for Easter!. In addition to her etsy shop, she also has her own website which you can access from her blog.
Judy sells children's hand smocked, hand embroidered, one-of-a-kind, dresses. I have to say, I am overwhelmed, awed and amazed by hand smocked dresses. They are incredible. If I had a daughter, I would be hard pressed not to buy every dress in Judy’s shop.
I volunteered for our local county fair’s arts and crafts department for years and there was one lady who always brought in hand smocked dresses that she had made her granddaughters. I was almost afraid to touch them. I can’t even describe how they make me feel. So when I saw Judy’s shop, I just had to feature her.
When I asked Judy about her design process, this is what she had to say – "Over the years I have created my own design style, which involves the combination of hand smocking and hand embroidery. I love animals, especially dogs and rabbits, and I love gardening and flowers, so these have become the inspiration for my dresses. Since I was very young I have loved to fantasize and attribute human qualities to animals and inanimate objects. Many of my dresses have this fantasy-like quality about them."
"Usually, my mood at the time, dictates which fabric I will use and sometimes the fabric will spark an idea for me. Other times, when I sit down to begin smocking I have no idea what I want to put on the dress. I just begin and it's like magic; as if the scene just flows from my finger-tips. I never know what is coming next; it just happens. I never use a pattern or draw anything on the dress front. All my work is done free-hand, as I go. With just a needle and embroidery floss, the scene grows before my eyes. It is purely the design process; the composition, the smocking and embroidery, that I love, not the sewing. I like to think of a dress front as my canvas, the embroidery floss, my paint, and my needle- my paint brush!"
Judy says she made her first smocked dress for her daughter when she was an infant and that these dresses are the only things she likes to sew. She says her dresses get more detailed and complex with every year, making them a constant challenge.
Judy has 2 grown children and 2 grandchildren. She lives in Walnut Creek, CA with her Bedlington Terrier, Pascal.
Thanks so much Judy, for allowing me to feature you on my blog! I LOVE your dresses and wish every success for your shop. Check out RabbitWhiskers - if you order today, I'll bet you would get it in time for Easter!!