Oolong June 2024

Oolong 1 - Barbara J Walker - Fiber Artist - Image ©Barbara J. Walker

Oolong—my latest piece. It was inspired by a historic Japanese earthenware tea jar that was displayed with a cover held in place with decorative cords. Oolong is ply-split with artist-made linen cords. The dark blue cords are made of rayon. My focus was texture, rather than bright colors. The decorative knots are a Japanese design with toggle knots on the ends of the cords. A 30-facet globe knot sits atop the lid. I stained the sides haphazardly with very strongly brewed black tea. The inside is filled with tea bags stuffed with bits of fiber.


Oolong is well traveled. It was part of the “Materials Hard + Soft 2024” exhibition in Denton, Texas, and it’s currently part of the “NWCraft2024” exhibition at the Schack Art Center, Everett, Washington, until August 24.

Oolong 2 - Barbara J Walker - Fiber Artist - Image ©Barbara J. Walker
Oolong 3 - Barbara J Walker - Fiber Artist - Image ©Barbara J. Walker
Barbara J. Walker - Fiber Artist
Barbara J. Walker, Fiber Artist

About The Author

Barbara was awarded the Master Certificate of Excellence in Handweaving from Handweavers Guild of America in 1990. She is an active member of Northwest Designer Craftartists, has been a faculty member of the Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts and the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and has taught for guilds and conferences in the United States, England, Canada, and Japan. Her work has been exhibited internationally, and two of her pieces are the only examples of ply-splitting included in Lark Books' 500 Baskets. She is an enthusiastic educator and has had numerous articles published in Strands, Complex Weavers Journal, Handwoven, Weaver’s, and Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot. Barbara has published two books, Ply-Splitting from Drawdowns: Interpreting Weave Structures in Ply-Split Braiding in 2012 and Supplementary Warp Patterning: Turned Drafts, Embellishments & Motifs in 2016.

Barbara’s home studio overlooks the Willamette Valley in Salem, Oregon.

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Fiber art pieces by Barbara J. Walker are available for purchase during exhibitions and through this website.