After textiles, fashion designer Jenefer Pleadwell’s second love is growing food, but her desire to be connected with the land can even be seen through her line as all the fabrics used are hand-dyed natural fibres.
Pleadwell embroiders these natural fibres to create her wearables with what she describes as their “emphasis on bold surface design.” Some of her pieces have gone through as many as four dye baths to attain the colour layers she desires, plus she makes all her own buttons from clay. She uses mostly wool and silk which are her favourites “because they dye so beautifully.”
Her vision for twofolds textiles was, “to make unique pieces in the artisan tradition that allow me to experiment with dyeing and surface design technique,” she says. “My work is inspired by the tension that exists between tradition and innovation, and the desire to educate and inform people about how cloth is made.”
However, when Pleadwell is not in the studio she works full-time for local farmers’ markets, which allows her to fulfill her longing to connect more with the land. “I don##Q##t currently have access to a garden space,” she says, “so working at the markets allows me to contribute in some part to building a local food system.”
Born in Peterborough, Ont., in 1976, Pleadwell studied textile arts at Capilano University in North Vancouver from 2001 to 2003 before studying weaving at Place des Arts in Coquitlam in 2006.6. She is currently studying fashion design at Vancouver Community College to upgrade her skills.
Although there are a lot of contemporary designers whose work she admires, “I##Q##m most influenced by textile tradition and the countless unnamed artisans who are the weavers, dyers, and embroiderers of history,” she says.
Her wool coats and vests can be worn throughout autumn and until spring, but her silk pieces can be worn all year round to add some colour to your wardrobe. “I don##Q##t aspire to create collections,” Pleadwell says. “I create pieces for individuals to love and wear for years.”
Pleadwell shops at consignment and thrift stores for the most part but wears the odd piece from high-end shops and of course, from her own line. She wears lots of black, white, and grey but adds a splash of primary colour to her outfits. She describes her style as, “Pretty minimal with a little edge.”
Pleadwell’s plans for the future are to continue building her line and mastering her technique but she would also like to start teaching dye workshops. Her target audience is women of all ages but since she’s been getting so much interest from men she plans to start making her coats and vests for them too.
You can purchase Pleadwell’s line at Circle Craft on Granville St. as well as from her studio on the east side of Vancouver. But for the best selection of her work, you should contact her directly.
For more information visit: http://twofoldstextiles.blogspot.com/