Inventive Fiber Crafts



A fabulous friend of mine (who no doubt knows me very well) picked this seriously awesome book up for me at the thrift store.  Just by the cover, I could tell I was in for something great, but hoo-doggies!  It surpassed even my high expectations.



Now, your pal Betty is a dyed in the wool pattern follower.  I’m not the kind of gal who can just knit or sew up whatever her little heart desires.  Even my crewel designs are carefully planned out so that when I finally dig in, I have a pattern to follow.  But when I see these beautiful, organic, free form fiber creations, I want to dive headfirst into a big ole pile of yarn and see what I can come up with!  I especially like this “Angel of Death” piece.  Who would have thunk it – a simple chain stitch creating such beauty!



Can you imagine just sitting down with all your scrap yarn, knitting whatever methods and stitches struck your fancy, and creating something as gorgeous as “Convergence” above? I would pay money for that in an art gallery in a hot minute.



How about this mind blowing pillow, again created with only the simple chain stitch?



Of all the amazing images, this necklace is the thing that most captured my inspiration.  I am desperate to try to make something like it.  I adore it.



I want to hang out with a glass of wine under this knitted placenta forever.



Doesn’t this space look like it could be pulled from a current design magazine rather than a 35 year old book?  Also, yarn room divider.  Yes.



Judging by the bio at the front of the book, Elyse Sommer has written several things I’m going to have to dig up.  A New Look At Crochet, A New Look At Felt, Wearable Crafts, Make It With Burlap…are you kidding me?  Elyse Sommer is clearly my craft guru.

The Evolution of a Manspace

I’ve mentioned Mr. Crafter’s barn/office before – once when we first redid it into a useable space, then when we repainted the exterior.  But like a very wise friend of mine says, spaces in your home are like living breathing things, constantly changing, adapting, flexing.  Mr. Crafter’s office / man cave is a great example of this phenomenon.  Gradually, he has added bits and bobs, arranging them in that “perfectly staged to look like they’ve been there for 50 years” way he has.  It has evolved into something that would probably cause the American Pickers to slam on the brakes and race each other to our door.  I always enjoy going in there and looking around at all his little treasures, and I thought you might like to see it too!

IMG_1254      His original idea was to recreate a 1950s Mobil gas station, but he’s moved away from that idea slightly.  He still wants it to feel like a gas station, but he’s allowing himself to add other things if he wants, like this crazy awesome Hep-Ur-Sef sign.  We researched what this sign was all about after prying it off a falling down outbuilding.  Apparently it was a chain of self serve gas stations in Alabama in the 50s and 60s.IMG_1260Eventually we want to install this gas station lamp in the ground and get it working, if possible.  The old Mobil gas pump has the original glass globe that goes on top, but it’s in such good condition that it’s inside the barn to keep it from getting trashed.  But the pump itself looks perfect just like this, I think.IMG_1255



IMG_1250Inside is awash in vignettes of whatever little things strikes the mister’s fancy.  He loves old packaging – boxes, cans, jars – and has them stacked here and there.  There’s a very thin line between collector and hoarder.  Hopefully we’ll know when we get there.IMG_1256










IMG_1259A lot of the little things in his office are things I bought on a picking trip, meaning for the shop, that he confiscated and promptly installed in his obsessitorium.  He’s like a 200 pound magpie, picking off little treasures and stashing them away in his nest.

In a year or so from now this space will look completely different, having grown and changed as much as Little Betty does from care and attention.  I’ll be sure to share it with you.