WIP “Prairie Sky – Cirrus” wall hanging.
People sometimes ask me what took me so long to actually sell my work and start a business? The answer, as with most things in life, is complicated.
I’ve been absorbed and immersed in fibre most of my life, from a very young age. Learning sewing, embroidery, and knitting before entering the double digits in age. None of it was very good, mind you, but I had the rudiments taught to me by my paternal grandmother. She was an excellent seamstress and needlewoman, often winning prizes for her work.
As I entered my teen years I drifted away from fibre, encouraged by a school system that felt I was “matriculation” and didn’t need to learn to sew or create art. I balked at the latter. It was in my teen years I took up painting. My interest continued into my 30s.
“North Mountain Lookout” and “Azaleas”
“White Elephant Inn”
But I kept coming back to fibre… My grandmother taught me to tat lace as a teen. My mother bought me needlepoint patterns and supplies. I continued to embroider and sew. I learned cross-stitch. I attempted my first quilt at seventeen. It’s still unfinished! I did finish the quilt for my first baby’s crib though.
When I had my first child I learned to hook rugs. That was 30 years ago now. I hooked rug and painted side-by-side for some time. We moved and the paints were put away. The rug hooking too.
Our new community had a wide variety of fibre craft opportunities. I took up quilting…
Hardanger embroidery from the Hardanger Fjord region of Norway.
And finally settled on rug hooking again about 16 years ago. From the beginning I knew I wanted to design my own work. I also knew I didn’t want to just hook wool fabric. It creates beautiful work, but it just wasn’t me. And so the experimenting began…
“Pennsylvania Dutch” – t-shirts and double knits.
“Cohasset” a free pattern from a magazine. Yarn and wool fabric, sculpted border.
“Family Reunion” – wool yarn, wool fabric, beads, wire, silk thread, cotton threads, polyester thread, rayon thread.
“Hollyhocks” – wool yarn and fabric, polyester yarn, roving, mohair locks.
And I took up spinning…
Canola fields art yarn drying for my “Prairie Sky” wall hangings.
I was happily hooking along one day at the annual local fair, demonstrating, when a man came up to me and started asking about my work. By the end of the conversation he wanted to know why I had not become a juried member of the Saskatchewan Crafts Council. It was the first time I’d heard of the Crafts Council.
It took a few years, but finally I decided I was ready to take the plunge. I applied to be juried in and was. That was 2 1/2 years ago. Since then I’ve had a lot of fun learning the ropes of having a craft business. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long!
It seems like yesterday I was in the “upper room” of the Affinity Gallery in Saskatoon having my work juried. I look forward to many more years of fun and learning in this business.
A big shout out to all the people who have helped and encouraged me along the way. Both online and in real life. Without you I would not have had the courage to try and have a craft business. 🙂
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading. Hope you have a wonderful day! 🙂