Read about my initial concept of the skirt.
Marijke suggested that I make a small try-out to test the hoops’ sizes and construction. That was a smart suggestion, not only to learn about making a 3-dimensional construction, but also to figure if this hoop could be made large with the same materials. After making the model, it actually made me re-think the practicality of making a social-distance hoop.
In order to create the model from materials in our yard, for the hoops I decided on twigs from a brush that is common in our high-desert: Squawbush (Rhus trilobata). It has been used traditionally by the indigenous local People for basketmaking, in the same way as Willow branches have been used in Holland.
When you pick them fresh, the twigs are pliable; they need to be shaped in such a way that, when they are dried out, they keep the form of what you want to use them for. So I dried them in circles. During this drying process, I hand-sewed some tunnels in two pieces of circular fabric, thinking the fabric would keep the hoops in places. But alas! That was one-dimensional thinking!
HOW THE TUNNEL IDEA DID NOT WORK.
THE SAME LITTLE CIRCULAR TWIGS (as I used in my previous experiment above) I COVERED and DISTANCED VERTICALLY WITH SOME LEFTOVER BIAS TAPE.
I SEWED A SMALL MODEL SKIRT TO TRY OUT THE NEW CONSTRUCTION.
Even on the little model, the hoop was uneven and not stable. Wobbly! Started to make me think 🤨: Do I really want make a hoop from Squaw Bush on a real skirt – and would I actually want to wear it? Would I be able to walk through doors, get into a car, or even sit down? Would I trip?