My artwork embraces traditional rag rug techniques, which in bygone years were limited to relatively scarce remnants from homestead use. I bring to that tradition new explorations of color and pattern made possible by increased availability of post-industrial and post-consumer fabrics. Some of the recycled materials I use result from the manufacturing of cotton socks, Pendleton wool clothing, and upholstery manufacturing. I make pieces using antique looms. However, I also weave pieces on more modern looms. The scarf, Gothic Cross Plus, combines an established weaving pattern with an extra twist and color that speaks loudly. I enjoy exploring unique combinations of materials in my weavings. The piece New Orleans Rain incorporates highly sought cultural objects of the city- Mardi Gras beads. During Carnival, Mardi Gras beads and other ‘throws’ represent not just present-day happiness, but also a celebration of history and tradition. Thus, I strive to honor my history as a 4th generation Southern Illinoisan while opening new horizons of creativity through art.
My education includes a BS and MS (SIU-C), an MBA (Maryville University) and a JD (Saint Louis University). A stint as a legal aid attorney in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky and as a government attorney in Virginia afforded me the opportunity to view many traditional Appalachian arts, including the work of master weavers. I have attended weaving classes in Southern Illinois, Indiana, and North Carolina.