information

Thank you for visiting my shop! In early 2010 I started making coiled rope baskets that exposed the natural cotton rope and used colored thread as both structure and decoration. My interest in the coiling process grew out of previous studies in knitting and free-form 3d weaving. I launched this webshop on October 1, 2011 and have continued to explore many variations on the process, creating quite a variety of functional and sculptural objects. You can see an overview of all these pieces on my website by clicking here.

All pieces are lovingly handmade and hand-formed one at a time in my brooklyn studio. The rope works are made from sewing thread and braided 100% cotton or nylon cord, stitched on my vintage industrial zig-zag sewing machines. The fabrication technique was learned from the crafting community and adapted for my sculptural and formal explorations. The technique is itself based on the ancient method of making ceramic coiled pots as well as coiled basketry. For me the collection explores ways of transforming a linear material into three-dimensional objects, an interest I have also studied in other materials such as yarn or plastic tubing. I also see the process as a form of analog 3D printing/prototyping performed by a sewing machine and with much less precision. In this way the "3D file" is in my head as I begin each piece and its formation happens by making certain adjustments to the work while sewing. The process has its own limitations, largely determined by the sewing machine, and each piece takes on deformations and glitches that give it unique personality. They are individually sewn on industrial zig-zag sewing machines without the use of forms or molds.

The forms explore the spatial possibilities of the coiling method and are influenced by masonry construction, folk basketry, and forms found in nature and everyday objects. Many shapes and functions have been explored including bags, baskets, trays, sculptural vessels, masks and wearable objects. Most pieces are determined by a set of parameters that help to define their overall shape or composition but allow for a certain amount of variation from one to the other. With the obvious exception of the bags, most of the pieces are not produced with a specific function in mind yet the shapes may reference common utilitarian items or hint at possibles uses. My interest lies in the relationships between form/space, material, process, surface and structure, as well as the unique events and characteristics that arise from the contrasts of hand work vs machine work, planning vs improvisation, familiarity vs strangeness, utility vs. uselesness, etc.

Elle Decor and Cotton produced this video about our studio:


Unless otherwise listed as "currently in stock" in the item description, each piece is available as made-to-order as noted in the description. Please allow 3 weeks from the time you place the order to time of shipping preparation for made-to-order pieces. For these items please note that photos are representative of the general product in size, shape, and configuration. Because each piece is handcrafted, the actual item you receive will have its own unique marks, stitching, shape and details that might vary from the representative photos.

I will be adding new pieces somewhat regularly and you can subscribe to the shop feed to stay updated. If you see a one-of-a-kind piece that you would like to purchase but it is sold out, you can contact me and I might be able make remake it for you. Re-made pieces are not exact copies but will be similar in size, shape, and color.

The rope is raw cotton, unwashed, so the products will soften with use and washing though they will still hold their shape. The rope works are washable but some shrinkage and color bleeding from the thread may occur. Hand/spot cleaning with a mild detergent is the best and safest option. Be sure to test on an inconspicuous area first! You are responsible for the care of the pieces you purchase and I can't be held liable if damages occur from improper care.

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custom pieces, commissions and collaborations

Special projects and custom orders will be considered based on current workload and compatibility. Please contact me to discuss.

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payment

Payment is made through paypal. Most major credit cards are accepted and you do not need a paypal account to process your order (select "pay as a guest" on paypal page). Shipping costs and any applicable sales tax are added at time of checkout. If you do not want to use Paypal you can contact me to make other arrangements. New York State residents pay sales tax.

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shipping and shop policy:

For made-to-order pieces please allow 2 weeks to time of shipping preparation.
For "currently in stock" and one-of-a-kind pieces please allow 3 days to time of shipping preparation.
Please allow 5-10 business days for actual shipping time.
Shipping is either by USPS Priority mail or UPS. If you have a preference please contact me with 24 hours of placing your order and include your order number in the subject line of the email.

International orders are accepted - add the item to your cart and select your country to see the shipping charges for your order. Some countries may charge an additional import fee, which must be paid by the person receiving the package.

If you live locally or are going to be in the NYC area send me an email and we can arrange for local pickup. You can either email me prior to your purchase and I'll send you a discount code to waive the shipping fees, or you can write in the special instructions section at check out that you would like to pick it up and I will refund the S&H fees.

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Wholesale

*We are not currently seeking additional sales opportunities with e-commerce or online shops.*

Pieces are available for wholesale purchasing and wholesale orders will be considered for select brick-and-mortar retailers. If you are interested in carrying my work in your retail setting, please introduce yourself by emailing me and telling me about yourself and your space. Please understand that not all requests for wholesale orders may be met. Commitment will be based on compatibility with prospective retailer, current workload, and timeline. Contact me for pricing and arrangements: shop@dougjohnston.net

日本での新規お取引については、マツオカ tomoe@dougjohnston.net までお問い合わせ下さい。

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photography

Most photos in the shop were expertly taken and processed by Michael Popp. If you use, blog, or publish any of the photos please kindly credit the photos with his name and a link to his website.

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more about me
follow me on twitter
follow me on tumblr
follow me on svpply
follow me on pinterest
like me on facebook
Follow me on instagram (@hawktrainer)

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internships / employment:

We hire artists, designers, and craftspeople as independent contractors/freelance workers to help produce our coiled and stitched baskets and bags. If you are interested in working with us we ask for a minimum of 6 months availability including a training period. Experience with industrial sewing machines and a material-based art or design background is preferred, and must be an american citizen or permanent resident. Please send a résumé and work samples to work@dougjohnston.net

We do not offer internship opportunities as we do not believe people should work for free. Please see this handy flowchart designed by Jessica Hische.

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tips for users of svpply, tumblr, pinterest, ffffound and the like

I really love that you want to post my work on your site - Thanks! The preview images are a little on the small side, though.
To post the larger image in Pinterest, ffffound and Svpply you can typically click on preview image to bring up the full-size version, then use your site's posting tool to select the full size image.
For tumblr you can open the full size image and right-click it to copy the image URL, then paste the url into the tumblr posting box. An extra step, but worth it!
Also, please be sure to include a link back to the product page or the shop home page. Thank you!

There are facebook "like" and twitter "tweet" buttons on the each page as well. The facebook button is for the whole shop while the tweet button is specific to the page its on. Please like and tweet liberally!