2011 in Crochet: Anthropologie, Barbara Koenen, Fortress, Rhymit, Laura Theiss, Garden
At this time last year a fiber artist named Tiffany Dyer had created a crochet installation piece called Fortress. By the fall Dyer’s blog shows that she was working on recreating sculptural crochet animals based on some pieces she had found. That’s what she does; she goes around to various sources like thrift stores and seeks out abandoned crochet then uses it in installations and artwork. Her last blog post is from November 2011 when she had rediscovered a bag of crochet doilies made by her mother and grandmother that she wanted to use in her work. She was due to graduate from The Art Institute of Boston/ Lesley University with an MFA in January of this year but the blog doesn’t say whether or not she did.
There was also an installation exhibit last year by BFA student Monte A. Smith that was a gun store replicated in crochet. I asked then, and would still love to know now, what you think of the irony of using the feminine craft of crochet to create the masculine imagery of guns. Monte completed his BFA, specializing in both fiber arts and digital art. The most recent crochet work on his Tumblr is a set of crochet barrettes:
Although my favorite crochet work of his since last year’s gun store display is an anatomical crochet heart:
In addition to these exhibits, I also did a crochet artist profile, this time of Barbara Koenen who crocheted grenade cozies. Yes, cozies for grenades … strikingly similar in sentiment to a crochet gun store actually! Koenen has most recently been doing work on the War Rug Project, a ten year long project where she uses spices to recreate Afghan war rags for temporary installations.
And finally in crochet art news, the world’s largest crochet garden was on display at this time last year.
I reviewed the book Crochet!: Techniques*Stitches*Patterns by Marie-Noelle Bayard. I love that it goes beyond just being a stitch dictionary and also offers some great patterns to work on your skills.
At this time last year Anthropologie was selling some really cute crochet items including a mushroom shaped pouf and crochet adorned curtains. This year they have those same crochet paillettes on ombre curtains:
They also have a cool hat now that’s crochet on top but the brim is woven:
Another news article I really liked was about a group called the Happy Hookers who were getting ready to walk 13 miles in the dark, crocheting all the while. And some big news was that starting in the fall there would be a new online crochet magazine called Crochetvolution. In fact, I’ve become a big fan of this magazine (and not just because I have work in it).
At this time last year we also met Mildred Swartz, a crocheter doing some work for a group called the Pistol Packin’ Mamas. And we learned who the winners were of the Jimmy Beans Scholarship 2011. As far as I know this year’s winners have not yet been announced although applications closed a couple of weeks ago.
And eco-friendly crocheter Tina Dean Designs was excited about having her plarn items featured in gift bags at the Emmy’s. I’ve been really proud to see this shop grow. And her work will be at the 2012 Emmys too.
I was adoring the crochet that Bec and Bridge put on the runway for Rosemount Australian Fashion Week. My favorite crochet from this year’s Australian Fashion Week comes from swimsuit designer Lisa Maree who not only showed crochet swimwear but a great fringed wrap I adored:
I also wrote last year about how the famous Pucci crochet dress was worn by Bollywood star Malaika Arora Khan on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar India although of course I later learned that this dress is actually knit not crochet. And I also looked at some of the crochet clothing in the line by Laura Theiss, a terrific knitwear designer. She has some great looking work in her latest collection as well, like this:
Crochet on Etsy
I interviewed Etsy crocheter Rhymit. Rhymit is a New York based crocheter who currently has some crochet hats in her shop.
I shared items from eight different Etsy shops:
- Waffle Crochet Afghan by CoryAnn8
- Zig Zag Stripe Crochet Clutch by ALTernativeCreations
- Crochet Lariat by larrie2121
- Crochet Baby Dress by MyWrappedUpInHue
- Crochet Tentacle Scarf by creeplings, later featured in my roundup of 100 unique crochet scarves
- Bright Motif Blanket by BobiCreations
- Razorbacks Crochet Hat by twistingthreads
- Crochet Fingerless Gloves by CrochetPocket
- Crochet Bag Dispenser by CoryAnn8, now called CrochetByCory
- Silver Medallion Crochet Bracelet by ALTernativeCreations
- Crochet Loopy Scarf by larrie2121, now called HandmadeByLarrie
- Crochet Newsboy Beanie by MyWrappedUpInHue
- Hypno Spiral Trivet by creeplings
- Rasta Garden Hat by BobiCreations
- Fuzzy Baby Afghan by twistingthreads
- Crochet Flower Bracelet by CrochetPocket
The crochet quotes that were featured on this site during this same time last year were:
“If my husband made her a notched stick and presented it to her as a crochet hook, she’d make us each a wardrobe made of palm fibers and squirrel hairs.” –Laura Snyder
“Everything we create – pies, paintings, songs – resonates with our deepest needs as human beings, as creative beings, to make things of beauty and worth. It’s this act of creation that allows our souls to breathe, enables us to activate our spiritual selves and connect with nature.” – Lela Nargi
“We all get inspired by other handicrafters, by music, our loved ones, politics, colors, and different qualities. In other words, both things that make us happy-clappy and things that make us pissed off inspire us.” –Stickkontakt
“Our stories and our craft tell us who we are and where we’ve been. Without the story or the craft, we lose the legacy. Even Alice in Wonderland understood that once she came back up the rabbit hole it was her turn to tell the story. If we don’t tell these stories, if we don’t join this circle, our precious fiber heritage and the rich connections between women and the cloth might disappear like lost threads. Each stitch matters.” – Nora Murphy
“My mother taught me many craft and household skills but she never taught me to crochet. For that I have to thank her, as it meant I had to teach myself.” –Pauline Turner
“Whether it goes back to the old adage about idle hands being the devil’s work, or simply is a passion for the creative, crafting is on the rise, and it’s definitely not just for your grandma or maiden aunties anymore.” – Wendy Dwyer
“One should either be a piece of art or wear a piece of art.” – Oscar Wilde
“Whenever “hand made” makes yet another come-back, crochet is in the forefront because – in contrast to knitting or lace-making – no machine can reproduce the effect of hand-worked crochet. Crochet itself is a guarantee that real handcrafts will always be sought after”. – Marie-Noelle Bayard