A few months ago, I drew some cats in ink, and talked about placing them on totes, and tee shirts.
I began spending more time at my laptop than my dolls, I scanned and digitised 30 sketches.
I looked up the printers, sublimation vs screen print, tee shirt brands, materials and fit.
Then, I made more sketches.
But the idea disturbed me
Something about the process disturbed me.
Is there a need for more of the same if it isn’t doing anything new?
Is it introducing waste?
Am I a hypocrite?
If it was, then it makes me a hypocrite, because my textile art practice attempts to reduce by making use of every shred of fabric.
Then I moved on to questioning what a t-shirt means–besides being a body-glove of knitted fabric.
Save for 2 organic cotton t-shirts I rotate as pyjamas, all my t-shirts smell lightly of moth balls. They are from my early teenage years.
Almost all of the shirts are printed with sesame street characters.
I wore them to show off my fondness for muppets (for reasons unknown at that time. As for the reasons now-known, I’ll rain check till the occasion is called for.)
In my early twenties, I ditched the tee shirts for tank tops, and camisoles, a slimmer and tubular sibling of the round neck tee shirt paired with tight jeans.
Would I wear those tee today? I guess not.
If I didn’t have anything constructive to say, I’d rather say nothing.
Naturally, I have only been wearing plain coloured clothes for the past 10 years, and continuously removing excesses.
Then, I looked back at my first series of pocket dolls — The Mighty Girls.
Every one of the 2” bodies is covered with t-shirt emblazoned with hand written alphabets, in black caps.
Words that lie dormant in me found their way onto these little doll clothes.
With these protest doll t-shirts, my mighty girls punch well above they weight.
They embody the spirit of Noisybeak.
P.S. The adult tee proposal is not dead, but will be adjusted to better fit the Noisybeak spirit.