Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Walk in the Wilderness - Field Trip!

This past Tuesday I headed off for a new LA adventure. This time it was taking a walk through the wild and wonderful world of Robert Kaufman Fabrics. I'm sure your scratching your head going wilderness? fabric? Well, there really are a couple of reasons to call it a walk in the wilderness. The first, was that it was a vast, new place I had never even imagined, and secondly at times walking amongst the fabric warehouse felt like I was walking through the forest. This forest made of cardboard rolls. See for yourself.

A big thank you goes out to the folks there that gave me and Natalie a private walk through. It starts in the showrooms where your surrounded by samples, and boy RK has tons (literally) of fabric being sent out into the world. Nat and I learned a bit about the printing processes used... from Batiks right through wonderfully printed designs.

The first pic here shows the before and after the use of a copper chop block to wax up the dyed fabric before the addition of design all by hand.
The second, (which is amazing) of the complexity of how a joint must be carefully designed and used when screen printing. You can see it on the back --- but never, never on the front.
Then it was off into the warehouse...ok, warehouses. The first was just a cavernous space filled, seemingly from floor to ceiling with fabric coming in. Coming in, wrapped in a variety of ways, organized so that everything can be found and pulled as needed and sent over to the other warehouse where all that fabric is prepped to go out into the quilt world.

In between the two warehouses is a huge space where there are folks that just make the boxes and bolt boards like these for the Kona Fabrics. This picture was taken of just one small little spot within the mountain of these boards awaiting fabric.
After walking through the wilds of the warehouse we went through the art rooms - yes, rooms... and sorry no pictures here. You'll just have to take my word for it when I tell you that there is creative fun happening in those rooms and they've got plans for lots more!

Hope you enjoyed a bit of the walk on the wild side... and believe me when I tell you that you can just not even begin to imagine what it takes to get you, me and all the other fabric fiends amazingly wonderful fabric!


natalie. beyond the reef said...

Wow. Thanks Rose for a look at the REAL 'behind the scenes' world of quilting! This is something you don't see every day.....

Valerie Kamikubo said...

Well, I'm jealous! What a wonderful
wilderness trip!

Rose Hughes said...

val your comment made me laugh..funny where an LA person finds wilderness..thank you for knowing it was worth being jealous about, and Nat...Kaufman is the biggest facility I have seen, and nothing is even being manufactured there.. Imagine those places!