Get to Know Timothy Westbrook, the 2012 Pfister Artist in Residence

Posted by on Jun 4, 2012

Many lovely guests and passersby have come to enjoy the creation process with me. A few questions keep coming up so I thought that I’d share my answers with you so you can get to know me better. Feel free to e-mail any other questions to or come visit the studio and we can chat in person. I’m in daily Monday-Saturday and Sunday by appointment. Hours change day to day. You are welcome to request my presence in the studio by e-mail the address above.


When did you start sewing?

My grandmother taught me when I was five. My mother realized my interest and set me up with sewing lessons when I was nine with a local quilter. I’ve been sewing ever since.


Where did you get the idea for cassette tapes?

In eighth grade, I participated in a wearable art recycled fashion show. Being a “Purist” at the time, I couldn’t possibly sew with thread because it wasn’t recycled. I used the cassette tape as sewing thread. With that outfit I used woven plastic bags as a belt. I took a weaving course my junior year of college at Syracuse University with professor Sarah Saulson.  I made my first costume with the material for a student production of The Magic Flute opera. You can view it on my personal website here.

 When did you start weaving?

In third grade, I had a simple weaving tutorial. In eighth grade, I received my first floor loom from my friend Angie Oliver of Packbasket Adventures. My first formal weaving training wasn’t until my Junior year of college.

Are you from Milwaukee?

I am from the quiet town of  Wanakena, NY.  It’s a tiny town comprised of 62 year-round inhabitants located in the north foothills of the Adirondack mountains in upstate New York. It’s worth googling images or coming into the studioto see the photograph of my front yard. Here are some charming spots in my hometown to check out.

Are you only making costumes/fashion?

I am taking commissions for wedding gowns, evening gowns, ready-to-wear, scarves, hand bags, costumes for stage, costumes for isolated performance art, and costume for private commissions. The main goal is to create Victorian style ball gowns out of material I will be weaving out of cassette tapes combined with natural fibers.

How long are you here?

I will be here for one full year; my first day was April 2nd 2012, and I’ll be hanging out until end March of 2013. To learn more about the program I am participating in click here. 

Who is doing the weaving?

I am weaving on a four-shaft floor loom from my good friend and previous studio mate Elin Sandberg.

Who is doing the sewing?

I am sewing on my non-electric sewing machine. I have a manufacture date estimated between 1885 and 1895.

And with one last parting word, Guido Pfister is a fan of what I’m doing and requested to wear one of the scarves I have for sale in the studio.

More sites to peruse

The main Pfister Artist-In-Residence Website 

My online portfolio

Like me on Facebook

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