It’s said that a journey of 10,000 miles starts with a single step, but after a few million steps or so, it’s good to pause for a backward glance and consider the distance you’ve traveled. My current life’s journey started with birth in West Virginia, then I grew up in New Jersey, left home for New York City, and raised my own son in San Francisco. I thought I’d been all over the map, but would anyone have predicted I’d move to Japan? I guess my sense of the map just got a little bigger when I moved here.
I suppose there might have been a premonition of my travels in the number of childhood hours I spent trying to fabricate miniature kimono for my collection of Ginger dolls. Like so many others with a life-long bent for textiles, I had a seamstress grandmother who must have transmitted her “fabric-loving gene”. But there must have also been some special twist that made a little girl in a New Jersey farming community search out Asian costume books at the town library, then try to replicate the images in doll-size. So now I live in Nishijin, the traditional weaving district of Kyoto where shopping for life-size kimono is one of my favorite pastimes. And in an odd twist on my childhood passion, I now get my kicks converting kimono fabric to western clothes.