Cecelia (Cely) Tapplette-Pedescleaux
Quilter and Fiber Artist
I make traditional and art quilts, decorative items, wall hangings, clothing, and accessories, using all types of fabric. I knit, crochet, bead, and paint, sometimes all at once; most of my work is embellished. I am a "fabric-holic." I started quilting because of lack of money. I bought a quilted apron and potholder kit, for $1.00, one Christmas in the late '60s. All my family and friends received aprons and potholders that Christmas. I thought, "If I can make aprons, surely I could make a whole quilt." One of my inspirations is the Mardi Indians at every Mardi Gras in the 7th Ward. Seeing their elaborate costumes, I just had to experiment with beads, feathers, marvelous colored fabric, cardboard, and wire. It has not ended yet; I am still experimenting and learning.
The O Bracelet Project: I was so excited to join this project. I met artists in the community that I did not know personally, and reunited with artists I do know. We are supporting each other's art and rebuilding our destroyed homes from the levee break and wind damages due to Hurricane Katrina. I felt such a bond with the women from Rwanda. Even though our tragedy is not the same, we both have a sense of financial, community, and family loss. It is an amazing feeling, women helping women through our art to sustain our lives.