January 5, 2009

Etsy Monday - Cozy Cottage Creations

After a bit of a break over the holiday season I'm glad to be starting up Etsy Mondays again! This week I'm featuring Lynne of cozycottagecreations, who creates wonderful 3-D needle felted works of art - like this!

I first came across her work when I was checking out a tutorial on needle felting over in the Virtual Labs on Etsy. I was blown away by her Felted Earth Ball, and when I checked out her shop I found so many more amazing pieces! I love needle felting but I have never tried anything 3-dimensional. I'm always impressed with those who do, and Lynne is extremely talented at what she does. Here's what she had to say about her craft:

1. When did you realize that you wanted to be an artist/artisan?

I don't think I ever realized or decided I wanted to be an artisan - it's just my nature to want make things and do it as well as I can. Throughout my life I would rather make something myself than buy it in a store. Sometimes when I go to buy something, because I'm so picky and have a clear picture of what I want, I can't find it! So, I make it myself. I would so love to go back in time and live in the 1800s when making everything you have was just a way of life.

2. How long have you been working with your medium and what first sparked your interest in it?

I've been felting for almost two years now. I've always loved knitting and one day an email newsletter from my local yarn store arrived in my in-box with a photo of a felted bowl. I fell head over heels in love with it, and seriously couldn't sleep because I kept turning it over and over in my head. I was leaving on vacation the next day and absolutely had to stop at the yarn store on the way to the airport to pick up the pattern. After telling myself over and over "Do not leave this pattern on the plane....", I actually left it on the plane. So then I had to figure it out for myself, and I've been creating my own patterns ever since.

3. What do you find most enjoyable/rewarding about your art/craft?

I love the figuring it out part, especially in the area of needle felting. Often I see something and my first thought is "I'm going to make that out of wool!". Then my unconscious brain chugs away at the process and my fingers get itchy to get started. I'm happiest when I'm about 2/3 into the process and I can actually start to see my vision form into reality. I also love the sound of the needle felting tool sinking into the wool - it's like the crunch of boots into new fallen snow.

4. Where do you find inspiration for your art/craft?

Mostly in nature, and lately at the grocery store. I'm probably the only Mom that tells her kids "Don't eat that apple!" because I'm using it as a model for my needle felting.

5. What message or values do you wish to convey with your art? What does your art say to the world?

Hopefully that art and beauty can arise from all sources. I have two young daughters and they are always right by my side wanting to know "what are you making?" It's important to me that they know from this pile of wool (which came from a sheep) anything can be created. That the possibilities are endless as long as you have the vision and the patience to bring it to life.

6. Are there any other creative outlets that you use to express yourself? What are they and what do you enjoy about them?

Right now I'm totally obsessed with wool, and I just want to explore every possible thing you can do with it. I always have six other projects running through my head while I'm working. I do also love to sew, and I used to do a lot of it - making quilts, playthings and occasionally clothes for my daughters. However, my sewing has really taken a back seat to my felting. I'm not a very good multi-tasker, and I like to completely exhaust one medium at a time. It might be awhile before I get back to sewing!

7. Do you have any advice for other artists/artisans

Make what you love and put it out there to the world. If you love it to pieces, so will someone else! Persistance and patience are the keys to success in anything you do! And on a practical side, if you're an etsy seller, join a team of like-minded artists and become as involved with that team as you are able. I belong to several teams and am quite active with Boston Handmade and the NaturalKids Team. The support and comraderie I get from these teams has been invaluable to both the growth of my business and my growth as an artist.

Felted Fleur Vase with Daisy


In closing...

What's on the horizon for you right now?

I'm very excited to be participating in the Boston Handmade Downtown Gallery this holiday season. The Mayor's Office for the City of Boston is sponsoring our Handmade Gallery, located right in one of the busiest shopping districts in Boston. So, if you're in the Boston area this December, come to 505 Washington St., just off the Downtown Crossing T stop, to see my work in person!

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Lucie Wicker Photography said...

Yay Lynne! Great interview

Amy Jaz said...

Wow- very impressive. I know nothing about felting, but I can recognize talent when I see it! Amazing work.