Simply-Stated Contemporary Design
I finally stopped in to meet Barbara Zaretsky today at her studio in the Cotton Mills. I have seen her work in shops and magazines and was an instant fan of her simple and sophisticated patterns and color palette. They lend themselves to a clean modern environment of Asheville which is why many interior designers visit her to consult on projects.
All of BZDesign’s home furnishings and wearable accessories are hand-dyed and block-printed. The are made with natural fibers, plant dyes and textile paints making each piece subtly unique. Furthermore, she uses “Peace” silk which is silk created by a humane process allowing the silk moths to emerge from their cocoons and live out their full life cycle. Because the silk fiber has been broken into many smaller strands by the emerging moth, the harvested silk is spun similar to cotton or linen, instead of being reeled. The resulting yarn is soft, fluffy and light as a cloud.
At her studio in the River Arts District her silk fabrics are washed, mordanted, dyed and printed. To achieve the natural earthy palette, she uses concentrated plant extracts from a variety of plants including osage orange, madder root and walnut.
After the fabric is dyed and rinsed, it is folded, clamped and dyed again. The next layer of surface design is created by hand, block-printing or embroidery. Each piece is then either hand or machine-sewn into pillows, wall pieces, scarves and dresses.
Overall, the work at BZDesign reflects many of the core values we aspire to in Asheville’s modern lifestyle; simplicity, sustainability and sophistication in design.