While Menlo Park resident Karen Ferguson admits she’s been a tie dyer most of her life, she says she gave up her “two-piece suit job in the City” to do it full time.
“I was working at the Fashion Institute of Design as the out of state admissions director,” she says. “Returning to tie dye made sense when my kids were young.”
Karen apprenticed under Andy Castle, who she describes as her “tie dye guru.” She was hooked the minute she did her first garments solo. “I like doing garments that I would wear,” she says. “I’m not your typical rainbow-spiral tie dyer. And while I use a full palate of colors, I select garments that are a little more in vogue and not just matchy/matchy outfits.”
We first talked with Karen at her booth at the Connoisseurs’ Marketplace in Menlo Park and it’s at similar street fairs that she sells most of her clothes. Next up for her will be the Castro Valley Fall Festival on Sept 10/11. Closer to home Fall appearances include the Santa Clara Art & Wine, Sept. 17/18; Pacifica Fog Fest Sept. 24/25; San Carlos Art & Wine, Oct. 8/9.
One trend that Karen has spotted is that tie dying has gone mainstream, with colorful garments on the racks of local department stores. She says the clothes she offers set her apart: “I love the Grateful Dead and psychedelic music, but I like wearing stylish clothes!”
You can see Karen’s clothes on her website or by arranging to see them in person by contacting Karen at karenfergi(at)aol.com.
Photo by Scott Loftesness