Romantic Folkwear


Ayala makes her own patterns--fairy coats, poet shirts, floorlength velvet cloaks, peasant smocks, camisoles, bustierres. She chooses wonderful fabrics that float or sway, that give an ethereal look to the wearer. People come by her booth at Saturday Market in Eugene and order custom made items to wear to their weddings. This lead Ayala to becoming ordained as a minister in the Church of the Open Forest and conducting wedding ceremonies. She speaks superbly, with a vocabulary as much grounded in the nineteenth century as the twentieth. Certainly she has had much experience as a married person from which to speak, including a very long and happy marriage with Richard.


Ayala at her sewing machine, surrounded by her embroidery,
patchwork and handspun yarn.


The back side of a fairy coat, luscious with ribbon rosettes and streamers
custom-made for a bride who loves yellow. Underneath is a white
chemise trimmed with cotton lace and ribbon.


Paul Alkire looks splendid in a white
silk poet shirt with puffy sleeves.


Ayala made an Afghani style patchwork
gown for herself in her favorite colors.
Charlotte Lyons, an artist who lived at Wheeler Ranch,
used my bird illustration as a template for the appliques
when she made this gown for me in 1971.
Amy Maeda, an artist I met on Maui,
remodeled the gown for me in 1998.


Ayala demonstrates how her teal velvet cloak
swirls as she dances it onto her shoulders.