I love Pinterest because I am always coming across new things that I've never seen before. I've recently discovered the work of Dorothy Liebes (1897-1972). Dorothy was an American weaver, textile designer and design consultant who has been nicknamed 'the mother of modern weaving'.
Dorothy pictured next to her very impressive yarn wall!
Whilst working as a school teacher, a friend suggested that she might enjoy weaving. One thing lead to another and Dorothy bought a small loom and set about teaching herself to weave, travelling across the world to study different weaving methods and techniques.
In 1934, she set up her studio, Dorothy Liebes Design, in San Francisco. However, demand for her fabrics was so great that she set up another studio in New York and moved there permanently in 1948.
One of Dorothy's terribly glamorous assistants in the 1940s.
I love her incredibly bold colour combinations - especially her intense bright purple, black and green stripe design (below).
Dorothy was the pioneer for using alternative and unusual materials such as feathers, glass beads, leather, plastic, cellophane and even bamboo, which she used to create highly textured and tactile fabrics for a range of applications. She worked largely in collaboration on large scale architectural projects with designers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Samuel Marx and Edward Durell. Alongside running her own studio, Dorothy also helped to develop mass weaving techniques and synthetic fibres.
Green woven sample from 1948 - including materials such as cellophane, lurex and glass beads.