As a young girl, Erica Ekrem was shaped by the quiet strength of the prairie, by stories her grandmother told her during long, South Dakota winters, and by her parents who raised her in intimate relationship to nature. Erica is a student of tea ceremony, a folk-style bookbinder, a free-lance graphic designer, and an advocate for women's empowerment. She leads workshops on tea and bookbinding and is a founder of Sisters Of The Tide (https://www.instagram.com/sistersofthetide), a women's council that offers transformative gatherings to uplift artists, mothers, brothers, elders and beyond.
Erica's handcrafted journals have appeared in DesignSponge and Terrain: Proudly Made Series. She's an author of internationally published BOUND: Over 20 Artful Handmade Books. Her most notable work, Book of the Sea, is a biodegradable clam shell binding featured in the Paper Project at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. She believes the practice of journaling is a potent method for grounding and navigating transformative life experiences. Her most recent project is a bookbinding collaborative called Loombound (https://www.instagram.com/loombound).
Erica begin her tea practice after the birth of her daughter in 2007 as a way to connect more deeply to everyday life. She offers Tea Ceremony for gatherings, weddings, life transitions, reatreats, meditation sessions, and full & new moons. She is currently studying Usucha (ladle tea). Her teachers include Hilary 'Sati' Walker (Forest Tea lineage/Ryakubon ceremony), Kandis Susol (Urusenke lineage/Traditional Usucha ceremony), and the generous chajin of Global Tea Hut community & beyond (Daoist Chinese tradition.)
At the heart of Erica's offerings lays an unwavering reverence for Nature. She lives with her partner & their two children along the forested tidelines of Orcas Island, WA.
Erica has been offering bookbinding workshops for adults and children since 2015: Spirit Weavers Gathering (5 workshops: 2015-2017), Sisters Of The Tides Gatherings (1 workshop: 2016), and Sitka Center for Art & Ecology 2016-2017).She's also mentored students in both bookbinding and graphic design. she's written an internationally published bookbinding tutorial called Bound: Over 20 Artful Handmade Books and am currently writing a second one.
Erica will be leading us in the workshop Riverbraid Leather Journal Making