Joan Gouge
Joan Gouge
Textile: Silk linen and table runners

Mailing address
217 Heffalump Lane
Lopez Island, WA 98261




I've always been attracted to natural fibers of wool, cotton and silk. When my son spent his junior year in college living with a traditional Japanese family in Tokyo, his host mother happened to gift me a beautiful vintage silk, hand-dyed shibori, haori kimono jacket, along with a gorgeous silk crane-motif table runner that she had made by re-purposing an antique silk kimono obi belt. The beauty and the nature-imagery sparked in me the desire to learn more about these gorgeous and luxurious textiles and their meaning to the Japanese. Replete with complex patterns, colors, and designs that carry special meanings, textiles are so revered in Japan that stunning examples have been handed down from generation to generation, carefully stored and preserved through many years. I was astonished to find that kimono are hand-stitched, and that these textiles that originally cost thousands of dollars and reflect high levels of expertise, could be so readily available at an affordable cost. Even garments from the early 1900's have been carefully stored and preserved. I have been able to visit Japan, meet some of the artists currently working in the genre, and collect a vast array of beautiful vintage kimono, haori and obi to rework into lovely table runners, wall hangings, pillows, handbags and garments in my shop. I hope you will share my excitement and joy whenever you visit, and explore the beauty that is the Japanese aesthetic.