1 slip dyed in bronze fennel and rusted, 1 slip dyed in cochineal and rusted, jute, wheatgrass seed, sunlight, kelp water
The Caper’s contest, to incorporate food into design for fashion, inspired me to create a prototype for the “living dress”. I wanted to design a piece that went beyond imaging food on clothing to actually clothing of food. Last year, I made a dress of scarlet runner beans growing up a woven, metal dress, fashioned after Venus de Villendorf. When uprooted, the beans quickly dried and drooped. I wanted the Caper’s dress to keep her integrity longer so I chose organic wheatgrass as the edible textile, grown on a backdrop of felted jute. I bought the seeds and starting soaking them 12 days before the contest deadline. Then I spread them out on jute fabric cut into my pattern pieces for the dress and nurtured them for 10 days. On July 18 I sewed the seams. Voila! Underneath the grass dress are 2 recycled slips; one dyed in the natural dye cochineal, the other dyed in the leaves of the bronze fennel (from my garden). The lacy quality of the slip echoes the delicate patterns in the roots and leaves of plants. The grid pattern on the longer slip is created by rust and is meant to evoke the network of roots that feed the grass. Eve is barefoot in her garden; her earrings are fresh cherries, her watering can resplendent with more.