About KaliBasi

Kalibasi Designs ~ Wearable Art ~ Handcrafted Felt Apparel

Kalibasi felt artist WA USAWho is behind KALIBASI DESIGNS? Kali Basi was born in New Zealand. It was Kali’s heritage that influenced her passion for Indian cottage crafts. Kali was brought up in the richness of her East Indian culture, in an environment of supreme handcrafts and excellent craftsmanship. Since the age of twelve, she has cultivated the fine art of knitting, loom work, weaving, felting, dyeing, screen-printing, embroidery and hand stitching. Steeped in this rich heritage, she later added an arts degree, and a number of years in the fashion industry.

In her 20′s Kali spent time in India evolving her artistry of embroidery and hand dyeing while working with master artists in the cottage craft industry.

With this background of a solid grounding of contemporary western expressions and fashions and her traditional heritage in arts and crafts as a natural living expression, she developed her own unique artistic signature. Working with natural fibers, exotic textiles, yarns and dyes she combined traditions of craft with a flair for fashion to create unique garments.

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By the age of 22, inspired by the 60′s fashion era, Kali started her own boutique in New Zealand, creating one-of-a-kind garments for exclusive clientele.

In 1993 Kali excelled in ‘The New Zealand National Machine Knitting and Design Awards’. Awarded 6 awards for her entries including ‘Best Runway Design’ and ‘Best Coat Design’.

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Kali moved to the USA in 2000 and has continued to explore and evolve her art.  Her work explores a wide range of textural effects and colors with techniques of nuno felting, dyeing, embroidery and stitching. Kali works with natural fibers, natural dyes and uses a lot of recycled fabrics. She frequently travels to India to be inspired and to source her fabrics. She loves working with the exotic richness of the vintage sari fabrics with their unique hand-crafted colors, symbols, patterns and natural fibers passed down from generations. Her designs are a fusion of her East Indian heritage blended with contemporary western expressions and fashions.

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In her latest creations Kali is exploring the art of Nuno Felt. “I love to create my own textiles for my garments, and felting is one of the few methods that an individual artist can use to do so. I love the flexibility and the unpredictability of felt. It’s magic watching loose, disparate fibers and fabric pieces meld into a strong, beautiful, textile with undulating patterns and textures when soapy water and a bit of muscle are applied.”

Nuno felt is different from traditional felt. By using fine base weave fabrics and manipulating finer fibers such as silk, soya, flax with minimum amounts of fine wool, a lightweight textile with many possibilities for exciting texture, transparency with diverse characteristics and dimensions can be created that drapes fluidly on the body. These individually created textiles make the garments unique. Kali’s current collection consists of a range of wearable art from scarves, wraps, jackets and skirts.

Kali has been participating in Art and Craft Shows since 2004 throughout the USA.
In 2011 and 2012 Kali was awarded ‘Outstanding Achievement Awards” for her work by ‘Millennium Art Festival’, Glencoe Festival of Art’ and ‘Barrington Art Festival’.Kali works from her home studio in rural Yelm Washington.