In about 2002, I met Barb Alexander at a Design & Sew retreat led by Diane Ericson and her mother, Lois Ericson, in Canby, Oregon. I knew of Barb through her Batik Butik online store, stocking beautiful rayon batiks she had personally traveled to Bali to design with an ethical batik company there. After twelve years of regular travel to Bali for design work, Barb decided to sell “The Batik Butik” and lead small tours of creative women to visit the people and areas of Bali with which Barb had fallen in love.
In 2016, I decided to travel with Barb on a “Bali Fiber Tour.” I went through all the preparation—getting the required shots, assembling a wardrobe suited to the heat and humidity of Bali, and buying expensive airline tickets—until three days before take-off, when I fell and hurt my back. I was in far too much pain to sit in an airline seat and walk around connecting airports for thirty hours. With great remorse, I cancelled my reservations.
In the spring of 2017, Barb nudged me again, and I decided 2018 would be my year for Bali. At Diane Ericson’s “Design Outside the Lines” (DOL) retreat in Taos during June of 2017, I met Tina Daily. We found in each other kindred spirits and textile sisters, and decided we would make this trip together. Then Barb asked if I knew anyone else on the DOL alumnae list who might be interested in going with us. In the blink of an eye, we had nine “DOLlies” signed up. The tenth woman in the tour lived in Alberta, Canada, and was as passionate about all things fiber as the rest of us. On Monday, April 30, 2018, I took off from Cleveland to meet Tina in San Francisco and head off for our great adventure.
The following pages will give you a peek into our learning, shopping, and eating experiences over the course of three weeks. Each page will have the photos from that section of the tour.