“Oh Sister Wear Art Now”
Located along Old Highway 64 in Brasstown Village, a cozy 1940s-era house is home to Altered Threads. If the weather is nice, visitors will come up upon Suzanne Poirier felting under a tent top in the yard. There, the artist makes textured, hand-felted apparel designs, embellished with silks, velvets, and beadwork. Her studio name refers to the fact that she has “altered” traditional techniques to achieve a distinctive style all her own.
Poirier has been a “maker of things” since she was 8 years old. Having been given a hand-made blue yarn doll, she embarked on a felting journey of 18 years. Broadening out, she spent time as an owner of a drapery business, a hand quilting instructor, and myriad other endeavors. For several years, she had a studio in New Zealand on an Alpaca farm.
Altered Threads is a fiber art studio and showroom where visitors can see and purchase a line of clothing that Poirier so cleverly calls, “Oh Sister Wear Art Now.” The line of clothing includes capes, tabards, vests, hats, and accessories. Also available are a selection of Shawbouti shawls, each one-of-a-kind and hand-knit. All items are for sale and the artist can make and ship custom orders as well.
Besides her collection of wearable art, the shop offers a gallery of fiber painted canvases along with hand-crafted silk fusion paper-made items. The artist wants Altered Threads to become a gathering place where local artists can meet weekly. She had developed a series of workshops to teach various fiber arts and also offers courses through the nearby John C. Campbell Folk School.