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Marie Friedman & Donna Korb

Profile of a Craftsman
The Scale Cabinetmaker: 2:4 (July, 1978)

It has been said that one of the characteristics of a true craftsman is his willingness to share his creative ideas and techniques in an effort to help others reach their highest levels of creativity. This characteristic of sharing is nowhere better exemplifie than in the joint efforts of Marie Friedman and Donna Korb in doing the silk rug article for TSC.

It was through the innovative and artistic talents of Marie Friedman that needlepunch rugs, done with a fine hypodermic needle and silk threads began to develop. With some technical assists from TSC editors Kathy and Bill Sevebeck, the ideas and methods were perfected. Donna Korb compiled information on the types and availability of supplies, wrote and photographed the article, and arranged for the printing of the heat transfers.

Marie Friedman attributes some of her ability to do a variety of miniature crafts to her training as a computer programmer. She feels that if you can decipher the instructions in an IBM manual, you can learn how to do almost anything from a book. In addition toher ability to teach herself to do many crafts, she has found necessity to be the mother of invention. Wanting some thin, in-scale dinnerware as well as some flower pots (when none were available), she decided it would be necessary to create her own. Armed with plaster and clay, a stack of books, some creative ideas, and a desire to learn she set out to make 1/12th scale ceramics. It was a similar desire for good quality electircal fixtures and chandeliers that led her to develop a fine electrical candle which is actually a tiny pin-socket. The use of the hypodermic needle for punch needle embroidery was an outgrowth of her desire for a detailed miniature fug that was also thin. Using her experience with decorative folk embroidery and a Russian punch needle, she modifie the hypodermic so that it was fine enough for use with silk thread. The result is a miniature rug so detailed that comparable effects could only be achieved by needlepointing on extremely fine silk gauze.

It is not only the desire and ability to teach herself that makes Marie a miniaturist extraordinaire. She willingly shares the knowledge and techniques she has laboriously acquired. She is eager to please all who purchase her work and thinks nothing of trowing out an entire week's work if the results are less than her standards. Her efforts, howver, have not been overlooked by others. Recently she was informed that she has been accepted into International Miniature Artists as a "creative artist of miniatures."

Donna Korb operated the Mini-Magic Carpet in Columbus, Ohio. Correspondence with Marie Friedman relating to the difficulties of silk-screening, led to the assumption of Ms. Friedman's silk punch needle rug business by Mini-Magic. Neither Marie nor Donna knows exactly how the transfer happene, but their collaboration has brought to the miniatures world a new set of techniques and materials. Marie still designs rugs for MMC, including the special oriental rug for TSC.

TSC Articles by Marie Friedman and Donna Korb

  • Korb, Donna (Author) Sultan's Garden: A Scale Silk Oriental Rug: 2:4 (44-49)
 

 

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