Jul 03, 2012 Stephanie Bouvia Uncategorized
The Marcellus Open Air Market opened Thursday, June 7, in Marcellus Park. Throughout the summer, the Eagle Observer will interview farmers and other vendors at the local market to find out what’s in season and what’s in store for the coming months.
Introducing: Karen Pardee, of Serendipity Saori Studio in Skaneateles
What are you selling today?
“I do freestyle hand-wovens, so I do scarves, shawls, bags, little accessories, all with my own hand-woven fabric. Even my shirt!”
What makes your products unique?
“Mostly it’s because of this loom. I import this loom from Japan, it’s called a saori loom. ‘Sa’ is like a Zen word for individuality, and ‘ori’ means weaving in Japanese, so it’s like your own individual. It’s not where you set up, like a traditional loom, to make a certain pattern. So I sit down at the loom and it’s all free-style, so I mix pattern, and color and texture, and I think that’s what makes it different from everybody else’s — they haven’t seen anything like it.”
How did you get started in this business?
“A couple years ago I had a medical problem, and I lost my short-term memory, and I had to put my loom away. I couldn’t do it anymore because you’re following a certain series of steps to create that pattern, and I couldn’t do it, no matter what I did, using sticky notes or index cards, or whatever trick I tried. I put my loom away for like five years. And then I came across saori on the Internet, it was a fluke thing. And as soon as I saw it I was like, ‘That’s how I want to weave.’ A year and a half ago, I spent a year studying with a Japanese woman in Worcester, Mass., and in November, I became an authorized saori studio. At the time, there were only seven authorized saori studios in North America.”
What attracted you to sell your goods at the Marcellus Open Air Market?
“I was just really excited that it’s local. There’s so much talent in the community, it never ceases to amaze me. The money that’s spent here is going to stay within the community; we’re supporting each other, and with the community supporting us, then we can help each other out.”
And why should people at the market stop by your booth?
“I think I offer something unique, if they’re looking for a gift, we just had father’s day and graduation, and things like that. But I also teach: this isn’t the only thing that I do. I teach at the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center, I have two weeks of art camp coming up. I teach at Marcellus Library, I teach three classes there, and my classes there are free to the public. I do two kids’ classes and an adult class, and those classes are free. This is just a way to get my name out.”
The Marcellus Open Air Market runs Thursdays 3:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.