Laura’s Box of Fabric

The box of fabric I
Laura Israel’s fabric

I never met Laura Israel, she died over 10  years ago, but I have a feeling I’m going to get to know her.  It’s happened before, a person comes alive to me through the fabric they leave behind.  There are stories too, the ones family and friends tell me when they give me the box or bag filled with fabric.

A piece of Laura's fiber art after the painter Modigliani
A piece of Laura’s fiber art after the painter Modigliani

Lindsay emailed me from Louisiana a few weeks ago.  Her friend Michael was going through some of his mothers things and when he told Lindsay about the fabric she thought of me.    As she sorted through the material, ( lots from the 1960’s)  washing and folding it, it reminded her of my quilts.  I was hooked when she wrote me that Laura was a fiber artist who had lived in New York.   She’d gotten her Masters in Art (focusing on Quilts) when she was in her fifties.    Lindsay thought Laura would have loved the material to go back to New York and be used by another artist.  I immediately felt the connection and when Leslie said it was Laura who first introduced her to the Gees Bend Quilters I knew it was meant to be.

Seductive Women
Seductive Women, part of Laura’s collection

This afternoon the 30 pound box of fabric came in the mail.   I tore into it finding one treasure after another.  On top was a plastic baggie with a few pieces of fabric and a note from Lindsay.  Now I know Laura had a good sense of humor  as well as being  creative.  Once pockets and a sleeve, I think these seductive ladies will be perfect for potholders.  I feel like Laura saved them, all these years, just for me.


13 thoughts on “Laura’s Box of Fabric

  1. oh man – what a treasure chest! can’t wait to see what you do with this material — a match made in heaven — have fun!

  2. What a great story! I love the idea that you can connect with a person through the fabric they leave behind ~ I had never even considered that. Thanks for sharing this one ~ I’ll think about that often!

  3. What a treasure… I spy some pretty awesome fabric in that collection. How wonderful that you can bring it back ‘home’ and breathe new life into it. Enjoy!

  4. I am excited,too, just peeking into the box in the photo. What a gift to warm the cold days. I’ll bet your mind is racing with ideas!

  5. Love the Modigliani piece. I have 4 of his prints in my house. People often mention to me that my greyhound looks like a Modigliani. Just had to share.

  6. Oooohhh, la la. Those ‘ladies’ with garter belts and hoop skirts…can’t wait to see how you work with them!!

  7. Happy Birthday Maria! Here’s wishing you a beutiful day surrounded by all the love that surrounds you! I know that people all over the world are also thinking of you and appreciate how you share your art and writings. You are a mentor to me in the way you create something beautiful each day and in your writings. Every morning I can’t wait to turn on the computer and read what you have to say and glimpse at your new potholders. Thank You Maria…Have a wonderful day!

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