Women and Sheepskin

Jennifer Parry Dodge

Los Angeles, USA



Photography by Rebecca Stumpf
Interview  by Yasmine Ganley
Making is considered daily practice for textile artist Jennifer Parry Dodge who runs Ermie — the online store offering a collection of one-off textile works, each made with fantastic colour and wonderful pattern.

Born and raised in Iowa, Jennifer currently lives in Highland Park, Los Angeles, where she happily blurs the line between profession and lifestyle, bringing up her son David Oliver amoungst the beautiful chaos of working from home.

Here, Jennifer masters the craft of dyeing with natural indigo, prefering to celebrate the little imperfections, rather than chase the pristine. A philosphy she also lends to her wardrobe and home life — finding pleasure in the pieces that are slightly off, stand a little wonky, or feel alive with the love with which they were made.




In your own words, how would you describe what you do?

I’m a mother to my (almost) two-year-old son, David Oliver. I am also an artist currently working with natural and conventional dyes. I make women’s, children’s and unisex clothing and textiles.

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Do you have a spiritual practice?

I try to say the Serenity Prayer each day. I also try to turn things over to my higher power/God/the universe and be of service to others. I definitely don’t do any of these things perfectly!


What does the word ‘ritual’ mean for you, and how do you honor such moments in your day?

A mindful repetition of some sort of event, moment or practice. I give my son a bath, read to him, and sing with him nearly every day. They are all chances for me to be present and to bond with him.

Do you have any routines surrounding health and beauty?

I’m trying to be better about self-care. I’ve started doing Pilates on a weekly basis. I hope to start running again soon. Acupuncture, massage, and getting an organic facial are all wonderful — I try to work each into my schedule on a monthly or bi-monthly basis.

When you are feeling stuck, uninspired or unmotivated in your practice, how are some ways in which you pull yourself through?

I love to wander around a bookstore or library and just pick up books that I’m drawn to without thinking about it too much. Doing studio visits with other artists and designers is also very motivating.



What does ‘community’ mean for you, and how do you experience this through your work? 

I love collaborating with other artists and designers. It opens me up to new and unexpected ways of thinking, seeing and creating. I also think it is so important to support the work of other artists, designers, and small businesses. We have such a gifted and generous community of independent makers and shop-owners here in Los Angeles. I try to do what I can to support and encourage others in this community.








book-

Franny & Zooey by J.D. Salinger, Just Kids by Patti Smith.

artist-

Susan Cianciolo, Philip Guston, and my husband Tomory.

plant-

Fritillaria flowers.






podcast-

I haven’t gone down the podcast rabbit hole (yet) but I have been getting into audio books. Right now, I’m listening to Peter Ackroyd’s Hawksmoor, Patty Schemel’s memoir Hit So Hard, and Janet Lansbury’s No Bad Kids: Toddler Discipline Without Shame.

song-

GLORIA (In Excelsis Deo) by Patti Smith, and David Bowie’s The Man Who Sold the World.

film-

The Double Life of Veronique by Krysztof Kieslowski.

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Jen wears her own Long Diamond Kimono, available from Stand Up Comedy.
“I love the dark brown and black tones of the sheepskins. The subtle differences in texture and color. It feels like I’m wearing a hug. I definitely appreciate the handmade nature of the garment. Most of all, it reminds me of Milena and our friendship. Her work is so inspiring. I wish we lived closer to each other!”