Ancient Zapotecan ruin in Tlacolula Valley east of the city of Oaxaca. The semi-desert landscape sweeps across a rocky ridge to small caves carved from soft rock and a series of outcroppings rising above the surrounding valley. The pre-Hispanic city was first occupied around 500–100 BCE, though excavated remains show human habitation dating back at least 5000 years. Despite centuries of weathering and decay from exposure to the elements, the ruins transmit a feeling of serenity and a sense of ancient times untouched. On every trip to Oaxaca since 1996, Christina takes a morning pilgrimage to Yagul to experience the colors and textures of this sacred site, which became the inspiration of our spring 2009 collection Me Encanta Yagul.
yo-yo puff (England/USA)
A circle of fabric gathered around its edges into a “puff” used for embellishing quilts and clothing. First, a circle is drawn on a piece of cloth, cut out, and stitched with thread around the outside of the folded edge while turning in a tiny hem as you go. The thread is pulled, gathering the fabric into a puff, then knotted. A traditional form of recycling thought to date back centuries, yo-yo or Suffolk puffs, as they are sometimes called in England, are best known in the United States for their use in Depression-era quilting practice. Christina attempted her first yo-yo puffs creation, a coverlet, in high school by following instructions in an issue of Seventeen magazine. For a project in 2013 evoking the transformation of winter to spring, 10,000 puffs dip-dyed and hand-painted in subtle gradients of sky, snow, and cherry blossom colors were made for an 18-window installation in Tokyo. We incorporated the technique into our Traveler 2013 collection.