(Danielle modeling one of her creations, “You’re Lovely”)
I am thrilled to welcome Danielle Spurge to Gypsy Mind. The Boston, Mass., crafter is an inspiration to me, since I’m an aspiring crafter and complete needle-art fanatic. Her designs are colorful and modern. I could hardly decide what to feature here. Check them out at her etsy shop, The Merriweather Council.
And guess what. She’s a cool person too. I knew she would be.
Have you been formally trained as an artist?
Yes, I have been formally trained as an artist. I recieved my BFA in 3d fine arts with a concentration in fibers. I graduated in 2010.
Have you always loved making things? What do you love most about it?
Yes, I have most certainly always always loved to make things. I like the idea of being able to create your ideal object or something that wouldn’t otherwise or doesn’t currently exist! I also really love to use my hands to build things.
How did you embark upon a career as a crafter?
It is a pretty funny story actually, I was supposed to go on to another university after my undergrad program to work toward an MFA but a lot of things went wrong and I ended up not going. That decision was made approximately four days before my college graduation. After that I felt I had a lot of freedom to try to start up my own business now that i was no longer tied to anything and had no job prospects because I had not been looking for one. I have been doing Merriweather Council full time since then!
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
I like simple designs that are also interesting. I think overall what I do is take something very old school and make it modern and fun and youthful.
What was the last book you read? Did you like it?
The last book I read was The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks. Super corny, but yeah, I loved it.
Name three things that inspire you…
traveling, colors, and shopping for supplies
What are your hobbies and interests outside of your work?
I have a very intense passion for boyband music, and I love to see all of my favorite artists (boyband and otherwise) live in concert. I also have other crafts I enjoy such as knitting but I don’t do it much. I like to listen to podcasts and watch historical/period movies on Netflix.
Ok, you’re stranded on a desert island. Which five things can’t you live without?
Ahh–I hope this never happens but, besides the people I would want there with me, I think defintiely an embroidery needle, thread, fabric, a hoop and my iphone.
Thanks, Danielle! Do stop by The Merriweather Council and look at all the lovely things I wasn’t able to include here.
I have long admired Mr X Stitch. He’s a needle-arts guru and a cool dude too. That, in combination with my own silly and, let’s face it, fanatical interest in Brittish royalty, spurred me to his site this week. I wondered, “Are Mr X Stitch or any of his cohorts doing something special for the Queen Mum’s Jubilee?” To my great enjoyment the answer was yes. Check it out.
I am totally obsessed with needle art right now and stumbled upon this book in the needlework section of my local library (that place of wonders…Every time I go, surprises abound.).
This is a wonderful, image-filled book by Leanne Prain, a needle artist herself. It contains interviews with all the artists featured. They talk about their work, why they make what they make, and how they got started with needle work.
Featured above: Mary M. Maszziotti (this piece isn’t in the book, but you can view it and other pieces in the series on the Hoopla blog), Octopus and Anemones by Kirsten Chursinoff (featured in the book), One Mutant to Another by Cate Anevski, a pattern for which is included in the book, and Stitched Secret Garden cover by Jill Tamaki.
People are so amazingly talented.