Not only did she make the Indian Blanket,Elizabeth armed herself with power tools and constructed the adorandak chair too!
Our Fellow Flickr Friends Focus
I’ve chosen to focus on today’s Flickr friend because I was so intrigued by her work featured in her photostream.
Besides being an amazingly talented artist,Elizabeth’s work is so striking!
You’ll be stunned by the range of her talents. How she leaps from true traditional crochet, to art, canvass, photography and textiles.
In particular though, I would like to focus on a project which took 10 years to complete and reveal how generous and humble she was when I asked her how she did it.
I was amazed and touched when she opened up her books, photographed them and uploaded them on to her photostream for me to see.
Her best advice is “to never give up. If you see something that you want, figure out a way to make it! Nothing is ever impossible and where there’s a will there’s a way!”
I’d like to introduce you to a strong lady with a dynamic approach to her work and family.
Elizabeth Waltermire or otherwise known as
“storms mom” on flickr… to be found here
Q I can see through your photos that mainly you prefer to work with art but who and where do you get your inspiration from for your crochet?
My mother taught me how to make a chain and single crochet. I remember sitting on the foot stool in front of her and following along as she worked. It was fairly easy because I am left handed and she is right. It was like looking into a mirror. I love those special moments I had with my mom! From there, I looked for books with unusual patterns and no matter what level they were, I figured it out…I love a good challenge!
Q Focussing on your Indian Blanket, what was it about the design that made you want to make it?
The challenge of course! LOL! I love puzzles…all kinds. The harder, the better. I also like making things that make people wonder, “How did she do that?”. I also like patterns that don’t look “crocheted”. The colors were striking which isn’t ever a bad thing either!
Q As an artist did you chose this project because you felt it was different?
As an artist, I always strive to give someone something they have never seen before. It was a pretty sure bet that not very many people, except for the original designer, would take on the challenge of this daunting task.
Q Did you make it with someone specific in mind? If so, what or who?
There wasn’t anyone specific in mind when I created this piece. I think this one was always just for me. For the thrill of completion and for having something that no one else has. I think sometimes I would like to sell some of my work, but how do you put a price on something like that? I mean the labor cost alone would be…unreasonable a price! Haha!
Q Could you please explain the design principles you used and their importance to your Project … e.g. the special hooks used, yarns etc and why did take 10 years to complete?
Ok, so I started with the center panel Red Heart yarn (cheap because I needed a lot of it and there’s no dye lot) with a long afghan stitch hook, size J. I put the piece up for a few months then started on the side panels. What I didn’t realize is that I had accidentally picked up my long H hook instead and it wasn’t until I had finished with all three panels and stitched up all the tails of dropped colors in the back, when I realized my mistake! I was extremely frustrated (as you can imagine) to see that the panels were different sizes! So I threw all of the things in a bag and put it away. It stayed in the attic until I was putting up my Christmas ornaments and saw it and decided it was time to start again or just throw it all in the trash so I wouldn’t be tormented by it anymore. Start I did! And finished!!!
Q What might be some construction complications you would anticipate in making this design?
Where to start with that question! Haha! Ok so you can’t carry the color any further than 3 stitches which isn’t much of an issue because the pattern is set that way, except for the knots of yarn on the back of the piece! I used small balls of yarn and let them roll out onto the floor and at the end of a session, I’d rewind the balls and untangle the mess. There’s a lot of sewing in of tails and many knots in the back. I really tried to keep tails fairly long so that if it did unravel or come apart, I could tie it up again. But be assured that it won’t happen! One thing that irked me about the instructions was crocheting the border. It wasn’t very specific and I had to go with my gut on some of it. Such as a single crochet is wider than one afghan stitch by quite a bit so if it says single crochet in each stitch across, you’d end up with a ripple or wavy border.
Q Would you change the design? If so how?
Because you mention that there were differences in the sizes right??
The differences in the sizes was my own stupidity, haha!
Q Do you think someone would like to purchase this project, or this going to be a keeper for you and your family.
I think I’d like to keep this one. I’ve made over 100 afghans and don’t have a single one in my house! Maybe I’ll enter it in the fair this year or something. Never done anything like that before…and I don’t know how I could sell it!
Q Finally… what’s your next project going to be?
Well…it’s kind of a secret…but I can tell you! I belong to this Flickr group called JKPP (Julia Kay’s Portrait Party). Artists from all over the world join in and do portraits of each other. As you mentioned, I have many artistic endeavors and sketching portraits is one of my favorites! I love the beautiful faces and people. They are the subject of most of my photography as well. So I thought, why not marry my two passions together and crochet portraits into an afghan? So far so good! The afghan stitch works pretty well except it elongates the image quite a bit. As I get a panel done I will post it in my stream! You can see patterns that I created on my iPad that are already up…