Katie Gardenia’s background before she became a fiber artist?
In her late 20’s, Katie Gardenia had a needlepoint shop in the North Star Mall in San Antonio, TX where she designed needlepoint. “One of my greatest pleasures was to design twelve dining chairs for Lady Bird Johnson.” ~Katie
Katie is also the former owner of the unconventional Bubble Room in Captiva and another restaurant in Sanibel. Her memoir “A Bubble Moment” was written in 2011 and features several of her recipes and stories to read along with them.
Katie Gardenia’s great-grandmother read tea leaves, and Katie read palms. “I remember that she crocheted and did tatting together which I picked up and love doing it.”~Katie
A funny story behind a doll…
Recalling one of her broken romances, one man discovered upon awakening that she had been trimming on his mustache for the sake of one of her dolls head of hair. Needless to say, the romance was short-lived.
What inspires Katie to create fabric sculpture collectible dolls and other unique collectibles?
The unique homes, in which she lives gives her inspiration among other things. The interior of one of her homes was covered in stucco and she use to sit and imagine the different faces and shapes fashioned into the stucco. Katie could visualize faces and bodies within the texture. She has a natural gift for seeing things and creating them from her imagination with or without a glass of wine!
” I’m inspired to get up every morning to create something unique and wonderful. A little Pinot Grigio never hurts either!”~Katie
What else does Katie Gardenia create?
She does furniture. She love’s furniture. If she drives down the road and sees a tossed out chair for the trash pickup, she retrieve’s it, refinishes and revives its existence. She completes about three chairs a year because they’re very, very intricate and nothing is repetitious. She does one-of-a-kind pieces, and all are hand stitched.
She also has a love for pillow art. Katie does lavish bead and embellished art pieces. Sometimes a part of the pillow is a camouflaged brooch that can be taken off and worn to a Mermaid party!
Katie Gardenia necklaces are hand-tatted, crocheted and knitted. They are
called free-form, with no two being alike. Scraps of yarn leftovers that she can’t bear to throw away are integrated into these wonderful necklaces and bracelets. The center of some of them are pictures of women, mermaids and Frida Kahlo images. She also has a small kilim and does clay figures that she incorporates into her jewelry.
Purses, Shawls, and Scarves:
Katie recently entered a contest and designed and created a shawl for the singer, Stevie Nicks. The shawl took two months to complete with hand beading, silks, and birds on it. When the shawl is worn, the wings move as if the birds are flying by body movement.
THE FIBER ARTIST STUDIO
Katie has lived in 34 houses, and each house is different. She goes in with the intention of being very minimal and paints the walls white. She tells herself, ” I won’t have it packed with stuff, but that lasts for about two weeks.”
Her current home, number thirty-four, is in a Western North Carolina town called Flat Rock. The home was originally built in 1836 as the post office building. Katie’s charming abode sits amongst a famous Playhouse theatre and eclectic artist shops and eateries. It stands out along the much-traveled two-lane row creating its own uniqueness. It’s blue and lavender paint with a black and white awning framing the windows adds a colorful touch to the scenery. The colorful façade beckons passersby to drive a little slower to admire the outdoor gardens.