The people behind Beautiful Silks pic

Marion Hera-Gorr
...is a self-confessed confirmed silkaholic. She enjoys textiles and garments as an art form, and expresses her feelings for nature and beauty using these wonderful silk fabrics and colour dyes. But why does she get up two hours before dawn to post little bundles of silk to others like herself, who are simply enjoying life and creating beautiful works? 

“The middle of the night was the only time I could claim my mother for myself. Often as a child in New Zealand in the 1950s, I would get up at 4 a.m. and help her by pressing, and stitching. Mum, a dress designer all her life, always had a dye pot, to dye trims and bits of lace etc, to match outfits. She at 86 years old is just retired last year from teaching dressmaking at the local night school classes in Hastings New Zealand.

In the 1980s, I met Susan Holmes. I was fascinated with Sue’s artistic process and application. She would start off with undyed silk, creating the entire fabric design and the dress, mixing textures of silk fabric to create a beautiful effect. Sue mentored me and encouraged me to recommence garment making. Susan is still mentoring me helping me through those difficult bits we all encounter, with her wisdom and insight.

Through my connection with Sue I have developed into a fabric collector distributor and silk researcher. I raise my own silkworms every year and regularly tour factories in China and India looking at the products, working conditions and variety of silks on offer. I stock and distribute silk textiles, yarns and fibres and am always keen to expand the range here, I also look for high quality woven cottons and have stocks of a few variations of cotton. Silk and wool mixtures are on of the most recent lines I have begun to import. Wool has now been added and we are also adding mechanically treated bamboo fabrics fibres and yarns into the range. It's an ongoing process of expansion, refining, expansion.

We now do in-house dying and dressmaking and I am glad to be able to pass my skills onto the next generation.

I’ve been sharing the joy these fabrics bring to me with other artists all over the globe for over 20 years now. During the eighties and nineties, I was employed in the film industry as a dyer, maker, and costume maker. Currently I now make dyes for distribution and also a small range of high quality easy to care for silk clothing - I distribute this undyed as well so other artists can add their personal touch on the finished work. 

We moved the business back to Fitzroy, an inner Melbourne Australia urban environment,in 2007. We've grown from just my husband and I to 4 full time staff in 2 years. We receive many visitors from all parts of the globe, we can share our knowledge with you when you come to visit us.

 

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