Welcome back, this is our latest artisan interview with:
When and how did you first become interested in crafting?
I have always created in some form or fashion. When I was about 13 I had a class in which we learned basic things like sewing and crochet. Back then I thought "gosh this is for grandma's"...
4 years later I found myself pregnant with my first born and started to crochet again.
How long have you been creating your chosen craft?
I have been crocheting 20 years and am self-taught in reading patterns and creating crochet items. I am also a self-taught wood burner and have practiced this art for about 8 years. I also occasionally create jewelry - and macrame being my medium here.
What are your crafting influences?
I really love the style of the 70's and am influenced when it comes to designing or crocheting clothing or making jewelry. My wood burnings are nature inspired and done mostly for commission though I am finding myself once again working with this medium a bit more.
Does anyone in your family do a similar craft?
My mother knits and does other "this and that" kind of crafting. My youngest son loves to paint.
What kinds of places have you displayed your craft in your life?
A few years ago, a local bar displayed my work for free. It was definitely about promoting the local art but eventually I had to pull my pieces out for various reasons. Now I own a brick and mortar store in which 28 artists share and sell their work, including myself. (http://www.charmedbutterfly.com/).
What else do you do besides create these beautiful pieces?
As I mentioned before, I crochet which is my favorite art, but in addition I created wood burnings mostly nature inspired. Macramé jewelry is also an art that seems forgotten but I enjoy creating those hippie inspired jewelry.
What is your favorite piece that you have created so far?
When it comes to crochet I would say that it’s the animal hats. In my wood burning.. I created a stunning Tiger portrait.. but my favorite had to be a Falcon that I was able to donate to the Virginian Wild Life Center for auction.
Why did you make that piece?
I like to be inspired by the people that want an animal hat and it’s hard to limit myself to just one. The fact that people have an idea and I am able to translate that for them.. that makes all of them my favorite.
The Falcon is a true original. I took the photograph, I sketched it out and I created the shadings ... I think that's why it’s my favorite.
What does it take to create pieces like that?
When they are commissioned it becomes about the person that ordered it. It is designed and created just for them and that means more to me than the dollar I might earn from it.
What makes this kind of craft "good" to you?
It's my therapy! A few years ago youngest son was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder and due to reasons unknown required 3 liver transplants in the last 3 years. I am happy to say that the last one worked awesomely - but during those 3 years I needed to keep my sanity and crocheting has helped me do just that. It's one of the only mediums I do that I was able to take into the hospital and actually do.