Somethings Wonderful This Way Came

Somethings Wonderful This Way Came
1970's Vintage Caftan in At Play

Thursday, March 8, 2012


It's interesting that new items surface from the great sea of collectors out there.  I've been contacted twice this week by people who wandered to this blog because they happened to find Steiger treasures.  One lady had over two yards of Mesquite and Palo Verde along with some other choice designs.  I was fortunate that she was willing to sell to me items not in my collection.  Another person has a great little tote bag and some scraps for sale.  She needed help in identifying them for sale on Ebay.  Another great item on Ebay is a two piece dress (skirt and bolero top) made out of Saguaro.  It's really lovely, and would be a fabulous buy if not for the stain on the skirt.  But, if you wanted to take it apart and use the fabric in a different way, it would be a really good buy. 

Steiger fabrics have really become a lot more expensive since I started collecting a few years ago.  My husband says that it's all my fault because I've bought so many and have, therefore, driven up the price.  I think it's because many more people are becoming aware of the great designs Steiger produced.  And, of course, baby boomers, like myself, are nostalgic about the designs of the 1950's and '60's.  I know that I have a great fondness for mid century modern design in all things.  Perhaps that's why Harwood Steiger's Sonoran Desert designs speak to me so compellingly.  He marries that great mid century panache with desert subjects near and dear to my heart.

Lesser known and harder to recognize are Harwood Steiger's abstract designs.  They are plentiful and diverse.  Very mid century modern, indeed.  Very atomic.  Very loose and fun.  Don't overlook these when collecting.  Steiger created a series of abstract designs named after Santa Cruz valley towns.  Many design elements from Native American and Mexican cultures are incorporated into the abstracts.  Most are printed in at least two colors of ink and often more.  That means for every color, the fabric was hand inked, dried and then inked again.  Amazing when you consider that the stencils were usually around 18 inches wide and required exacting registration.  The Steiger's were true artists and precision crafts people. 

What is truly amazing is that the Steiger's never went commercial by selling through other retailers.  All of the examples that continue to surface from around the world, all were acquired in Tubac at the Harwood Steiger studio. 

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