It’s the time of year when most of us start to look back at the past year to take stock and plan for the next. As a company, Alabama Chanin is no different. With a lot of help from our friends, we’ve brought the year to a (BIG) close with our first online Garage Sale.
This online event seems indicative of what an amazing year (decade) it has been. We were, quite honestly, bowled over by the outreach of support, excitement, and, well, love for what we do at Alabama Chanin. (We will be doing it again soon. Check our events page for updates and/or join our mailing list to stay in touch.)
Looking back on the whole year, it’s staggering to see just how many projects we’ve tackled, people we’ve met, and journeys we’ve taken – all infused with the same love that we experienced during our Garage Sale. Honestly, I can hardly believe that so many things happened all in one twelve-month span. It’s been 12 (REALLY) good ones.
We love this description: “Homesteading, Vogue-reading heroines with an appreciation for intricate, eco-friendly design.”
Our Journal has been “on ice” of sorts since the launch of our new website. We needed this time to make a few obvious changes, some back-end updates, and, quite honestly, some time to fill all the great orders we received during our recent sale—thank you.
While we “soft launch” the new journal today, you will find that we are still in process, in progress, and polishing our game. However, we have lots of holiday cheer(s) to share over the next weeks and, well, we just want to get started. Look for special DIY projects, new recipes, and growing stories as we move through the season. We will be back to regularly scheduled—and new—programing at the first of the year (more on that to come).
P.S.: Register to win a $250 Gift Certificate from our online store here.
The new alabamachanin.com is up and running.
Have a look. Click around. Explore our new categories. Tell us what you think.
xo Natalie and all of us @ Alabama Chanin
P.S.: Our new (and improved) Journal will be here shortly.
We are elated to announce the “soft” launch of the new AlabamaChanin.com website.
I learned yesterday from the (amazing) team Hugo & Marie that “soft launch” means that the website is up and open to the public but still has kinks to work out.
The building of our new site has been a long, wonderful, learning process of developing a voice for who we are and who we want to become. We hope that you will see how the company has grown these last five years and also hope that you will be able to find your way around our world a little bit (or a lot) more easily.
Please have a look around – browse and shop from our new Collection, visit our newly added Home + Table category featuring dinnerware from our HEATH Ceramics collaboration, find all the DIY Fabrics + Notions you will need to make your Alabama Chanin project, and collectively view our upcoming Workshops and Events.
In the process, let us know what you love, where you find troubles, and just generally what you think.
(Note that all of our pictures are not showing correctly at the writing of this post.)
In addition to the new website, we are also thoughtfully designing a new Alabama Chanin Journal – one rich with imagery and content that goes hand-in-hand with our website. We are diligently working to create a place where you will find the same content you are used to – DIY instructions, recipes, book reviews, and heartfelt stories – plus new themes on fashion and sustainability.
Thank you for following our journal over the years (almost a decade now), leaving your comments and suggestions, and sharing your own stories.
We thank you for your patience as our team creates a place for stories and community with our new Alabama Chanin Journal.
We’ll keep you updated as we make progress.
Alabama Chanin + Billy Reid invite you to a Cotton Picking Party and Field Day
With many thanks to our hosts Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q
Thursday, November 8th, 2012
10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Trinity, Alabama 35673
Please RSVP to email@example.com.
In anticipation of our upcoming event at Grocery on Home, I’ve been going through The Quilts of Gee’s Bend, by William Arnett, Alvia Wardlaw, Jane Livingston, and John Beardsley again this week. It’s only serving to make me really excited. The book is rich with history and filled with gorgeous photographs of hand-stitched quilts and the stories of the women who made them. The mini-autobiographies of each quilt maker provide snapshots of life in Gee’s Bend. Each entry is written in the seamstress’s own words, like this opening paragraph in Helen McCloud’s story:
“I was born down in Clifton, out from Annemanie. My mother was Della Mae Bridges. We worked in the fields, raised cotton and stuff. Kind of rough. My daddy was a big farmer-cotton, corn, rice, peanuts, squashes, cucumbers, beans, oats. And, Lord, we had to get out there and pick them. Jesus, I hated that, but if you didn’t, you get tore up. Watermelons, too. Two hundred pounds of cotton wasn’t nothing for me to pick. My daddy was so mean to us.”
SFA moments in Oxford: Smoked dresses, BBQ, the talented John Currence, more BBQ, and our trunk show at Amelia’s at The Lyric Oxford. More to come…
Alabama Chanin, Florence, Alabama, in collaboration with Drew Robinson, Jim ‘N Nick’s, Birmingham, Alabama
64 yards 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey, colors white and nude
47 spools Button Craft thread
112 yards embroidery floss
1 pound white glass beads
9 garment patterns
4 stencil designs
1 quart textile paint
24 talented embroidery artisans
Embroidery scissors, both large and small
8 sticks hickory
Construct garments by combining the first 10 ingredients, adding love and care. Once constructed with love and care, smoke embroidered dresses with hickory. This is the wood most commonly used for barbecue in our part of Alabama because it is the most plentiful. As luck would have it, burned hickory produces a subtle flavor and color in pork and dresses, respectively.
It made sense to us to use the same wood to smoke our homegrown garments (well, as much sense as it could make to smoke a dress, anyway). Like a pig, dresses require a low temperature and lots of finesse.
Once you get the fire going, smoke your dresses at a temperature close to 170 degrees for about 18 hours.
Serves the Southern Foodways Alliance Symposium, 2012.