My mom taught me how to knit by showing me how to make small squares, which she eventually used to make me an afghan blanket. I kept up knitting as an adult, which led me to discover felting by accident – I thought I had enrolled in a knit-to-felt class at the Yellowknife Guild of Arts and Crafts, but it turned out to be a wet felting class! I fell in love with the medium and have been creating in this art form ever since. I recently added decorative stitching and embroidery to my repertoire, and still dabble in a little bit of knitting.
Felting allows for a beautiful creative freedom, whether the items I want to create are on a flat surface or in 3D. I love to make abstract sculptural pieces using merino wool, which is so soft and warm to handle. I like to make vessels with decorative microdot lights embedded inside. I add all sorts of interesting fabrics or embellishments on the outside of that structure, making each piece unique. These are fun to make and they give a really beautiful ambient glow.
My favourite part of creating new pieces is figuring out how to make it come alive as I see it in my mind. Every time I start a new project I mull over what I want to create, how many pieces I want to make, and what it will take to make it happen. To me, the process of thinking about doing something is way more interesting than the actual making. I love to imagine projects in my head, whatever it might be, in hopes of being able to recreate them. I tend to want to get from point A to point Z way quicker than it actually takes to get there! Being invested in the process continues to teach me patience every day. But, as I often say, I will get a vision in my head, and then I will try to give my hands the freedom they need to make it happen.
In 2015, I had a show at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre called Under the Sea. The majority of the creatures I made for that exhibit were loosely based on sea creatures, but they all came from my imagination. It took me about a year to complete the 240 pieces that were a part of the show. It was very rewarding to see it all come together in the end.