Festival of Thread: Sept. 1-3 in Livingston

Fourth annual fiber festival includes a fashion show and exhibit at the Shane Center

Art Beat

The Festival of Thread returns to the Shane Lalani Center for the Arts in Livingston Sept. 1-3.

The fourth annual festival opens from 5-8 p.m. Friday with a reception and fashion show. Meet the textile artists in the Shane Center Ballroom; their works in fiber include quilts, mixed media textile art, weaving, batik, knitting, felting and apparel.

Cactus Blossom Collective of Livingston presents a fashion show featuring Montana Designers of handmade clothing and accessories at 7 p.m. Cactus Blossom Collective is collaboration between Kristi Reed of Windy Peak Vintage and Jessi Konley of Paper Airplane Designs.

Festival of Thread
Enjoy an exotic array of fiber creations Sept. 1-3 at the Festival of Thread.Photo © Deborei Motto

This year’s participants include:

Two designers from Bozeman:

  • Alayna Rasile-Digrindakisof Absorka is a weaver working across disciplines. Her textile work spans from durational sound installations and new-material innovation to commercial product design and “bespoke” clothing. Alayna is the co-founder of May West, a milkweed based textile design studio, and the founder of Hi-Altitude Center for Textiles, a forthcoming artist residency program in Helena, Montana.
  • Laura Lee Laroux of Revivall Clothing finds inspiration in the women of the Wild West and the bygone era of durable clothes and American manufacturing. She believes we can do fashion better: better for the planet, better for the people making the clothes, and better for the wearers.

Two designers from Livingston:

  • Jordan Reed of Lone Reed Designs began sewing several years ago as a side passion to her career as a professional ballet dancer. She decided to set up shop in early 2012 when her designs starting to gain popularity. She creates custom leotards for dancers around the country and around the world, and recently expanded her offering into custom clothing and swimwear.
  • Carly Schoen of MAYDAY Denim specializes in jean-jacket revival, embroidery, and denim-centric fiber arts. Using ancient techniques, she creates one-of-a-kind pieces of wearable art.

One designer from Missoula:

  • Julia LaTray of DonkeyGirl started her design studio after winning a local fashion-design contest. She works exclusively with silk and hand-mixed dyes and strives to design pieces that will remain stylish through many fashion cycles, providing comfort and beauty for years to come.

During the reception, help Livingston Sister City raise money through their sales of Japanese kimonos and kimono fabric. Refreshments and cake will be served at this family-friendly opening.

On the local scene, this year’s Festival of Thread textile exhibit includes:

  • Carol LaRue, a past Livingston resident now living in Texas, who quilts as well as paints on fabric using silk dyes and other media.
  • Laurie Gano of Melville, whose elegant and intricate tapestry work captures the beauty of our Montana landscape.
  • From Bozeman and southwest Montana: Carol Kimble who creates her art quilts using commercial and recycled fabrics; Gina Gahagan who creates one-of-a-kind art quilts inspired by Montana’s landscape; and Amika Ryan of Sheridan, who raises Icelandic sheep and creates unique felted rugs and pillows from her herd stock.
  • From eastern Montana: Debbie Smith of Miles City, who credits the vast openness of the landscape along with her solitary lifestyle for the mystical nature of her mixed-media art figures; Peggy Lynn of Red Lodge, who creates “picture” batiks with stylized western themes with an impressionistic look; and Chris Mullany, also from Red Lodge, whose screen printed, painted and stamped quilts also use many colors of thread.
  • Western Montana artists include Heidi Zielinski from Stevensville, an abstract fiber artist inspired by nature; and Rickie van Berkum of Missoula, who creates elegant hand-painted yarns, hand-spun fibers and original art garments in colors inspired by Montana landscapes.

The Festival of Thread

exhibit is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. At 1 and 3 p.m. Saturday, attend “Quilting As Art: Connecting Tradition to the Creative Soul”; the Trunk Show presentation is led by Montana fiber artists Gina Gahagan and Carol Kimble and showcases small art quilts.

All events are free to the public. Visit www.thefestivalofthethread.com for more information.