Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Interview with Cathryn Ward of Skaapie

B-You grew up on a farm with a large family. How do you think this has effected your work ethic?
CW-Well i certainly learned a lot about hard work from an early age, we were all given a long list of saturday chores - which included milking cows, working in the garden, chopping wood etc. I think it has helped me realise that working can be fun, you can choose to enjoy your work and 'reap what you sew'.Putting love into something certainly shows.

B-How long have you been felting and what got you started?
CW-I started felting nearly 3 years ago, I was lucky enough to attend a wonderful mom's group where i met Stefanie Roux, who did a felting course for a few of us eager moms. We all enjoyed it so much we kept up regular felting sessions and I carried on myself after that.

B-Where do you get your inspiration from?
CW-Nature is my biggest love and inspiration. 'Birds on wire' feature alot in my work which has become a common theme, but living in Kalk Bay, I see this scene at least 5 times a day and still love it.
I also love childrens books and having a child has given me the excuse to read them again! Some of my felt characters come from these such as 'missy mousy' and Pookie - the rabbit with wings.

B-Do you think felting is just fashionable at the moment or is it here to stay?
CW-I hope its here to stay. I do think there has been a big shift in people going natural and trying to lead sustainable lifestyles and I hope this leads to a continued appreciation of good quality homemade products. With wool being a 100%natural, renewable, sustainable and biodegradable material, then what better craft to support than felting! Would be very sad to think of it as a passing fashion.

B-Are there any other mediums you would like to work in?
CW-I've always dreamed of learning pottery and I'm in awe of some of the amazing ceramic work around at the moment.
I'd still love to learn to weave, knit and crochet, but i guess thats going back to wool...I would like to mix my work more with other materials such as bamboo and silk and would love to be making my own natural dyes one day.

B-Most of your work is for children. How does being a mother influence your work?
CW-I guess it gives me the chance to see life through the eyes of a child again. It keeps me playful. Its also my biggest motivation for doing this as it allows me to work from home and be fully present in my daughters life.

B-What is the most favourite piece you have made?
CW-Thats a hard one. Not sure about this, but i'm going to say a large double bed throw i was commisioned to design and felt as a wedding present.

1 comment:

  1. This work is lovely. And Blossom and Cathryn, felting IS here to stay. It's in a lot of oriental culture, especially those which have harsh winter climates, and is not a fad. France has some well-known felters and at Maison & Objet and Premier Classe autumn shows, there are felt decor and accessory designers that have been showing - and selling out - for years. So keep going!!