And, just like that, I’m back to crocheting…
Yesterday I was reading one of my favorite blogs and the writer (Hazel Monte) showed artwork her students had made which was inspired by crochet artist Xenobia Bailey. If I had heard of Xenobia before, then I had forgotten, but I’m pretty sure she is new to me.
First of all, I just LOVE that she is a CROCHET artist. So many crocheters are looked down upon. (If you doubt me, go join your nearest knitting club.) Of course, the pleasure of crocheting far outweighs any of the opinions of others, I know this from first hand experience.
Secondly, Xenobia is a great example of the beauty that can be achieved with crochet, not to mention the freedom you have as a stitcher with this form of work.
Here are the beginnings of triangles…or are they sun rays?
I don’t know if I ever shared photos of my crazy hippie coat? I had a lot of fun making this several years ago. It was basically my first attempt at freeform/freestyle crochet. (Believe it or not there are actually people who insist you use the “right” terms to discuss this…but hey, we’re talking about freedom here!)
Here’s a shot of the hood. I do remember sharing this last week, I think, after it popped up on Facebook. (As you can see, there was also tatting involved! Tatting makes up beautifully with yarn.)
And the rest…
I know the swirly boobs really made people laugh.
I still need to get the coat out of its box and redo the sleeves, which stretched out while being displayed at the area fairs and yarn store. I ought to wear it before winter is done. It’s certainly warm enough. It has actually been tested to be affective in 10 degree weather.
Anyway, Xenobia’s work reminded me I had been pondering some new porch art. In the past I have made and displayed crocheted doilies.
I have made these using mostly old patterns from out of date crochet books published in the 70s and 80s, I think. Making doilies can actually be quite challenging, and it is like math the way the instructions and all the counting makes you use your brain. Xenobia even says her works are “mathematical equations.”
Xenobia’s own patterns are fascinating. One of my favorite patterns are the simple concentric circles she makes. I find something really comforting about them. They remind me of tree rings, life coming full circle, maybe even cycles of time.
I began the work on this circle last night while H and I watched the Olympics. It’s been quite a while since I sat and crocheted. I have yet to finish the sleeves on the wool dress I am nearly done with.
Today I enjoyed working on this further as I continue to recuperate from the crud. Much to my dismay, I came down with the flu/cold thing and have struggled with it all week. I’m disappointed my health regimen wasn’t enough to prevent me from contracting the dreaded symptoms, but I suspect it’s another issue I need to work as this is something I’ve had a million times, ever since I was a kid. Anyway, I’m glad to see the tail end of it.
Xenobia’s work is so beautiful I know I want to fashion my pieces after her style. I’m just wondering if I will really be able to put these out on my porch where they are destined to fade in the morning sun? I wonder if there’s a spray coat I could put on them to make them resistant to fading? I’m also considering using them as indoor wall art once they are finished. If you check out Xenobia’s work I’m sure you will recognize how comforting her designs are, how easy they are on the eyes, and how they draw you in and give you a feeling of home and being secure.
With this first design, I am basically winging it. But I will probably research some crochet techniques to help me make my work neater. I like the way my sun rays are jagged, but really I would like to be able to make perfect triangles, like Xenobia.