December 8, 2011

Craft and Symbolism

In the last week I've been crafting at an alarming rate.  I've been weaving more inventory for my Etsy shop opening and I've finished another of my special order feltoonies. 

Firstly, I finally finished my Saori banner that I have been working on.  This turned out to be such a reflective experience and I definitely want to make more.  I've called this particular piece "shadows on the landscape of my soul". 

The full banner. I need to do more
beading before I can call it finished.
Close up of some of the beading.  Small
clusters of silver lined crystal beads represent
bubbles in moving water.

Close up of stitch detail. Obligatory bird
flying off into the sunset?

Before I go onto the other images, I wanted to briefly discuss the different schools of thought about  symbolism in art. I placed the shadow/silhouette and the bird in flight in my weaving on an impulse, and they inspired me to come up with the name for the piece.

Jung considered the shadow (silhouette) to represent the alter ego or the part of the self that is opposite to our conscious self.  According to popular theories the shadow represents some dark part of the self that we do not want to express but its there in our subconscious self.  Sometimes it is a part of our personality that we may not even be aware of.  Here are a couple of links to sites discussing symbolism of shadows.

Birds are thought to be symbolic of the soul.  Also, in dreams, birds can be symbolic of spiritual journeys.  Here are a couple of links about bird symbolism.
Scroll down to the section on Magpies and Crows.
For what its worth, I think that symbols in art or dreams mean whatever we feel they mean.  If you have a strong pull towards a certain meaning, then that's what is right for you.  But generally I believe what is widely held.  For me the shadow does represent some darker part of the self that we more often than not repress. That these dark spots exist does not mean that we are evil or inherently bad people.  They could just be a shadow created by a culmination of all the hurt or tragedy you may have experienced in your life.  They are still powerful enough to colour our perception of the world.  Which is why I think it fits so well into the brightly coloured landscape I've woven.  Some may see it as a blight of some kind but I see it as an acknowledgement of the darker spots in my subconscious, and I think that acknowledging them allows me to set them free.  I'm moving on from the things holding me back :oD

I decided to try some colour-changing yarn in my weaving and came up with a couple of scarves that I think look really good.

The last felt order I received was for two character feltoonies.  A Frankenbunny and a Dracula Bunny.  I finished Frankenbunny about a week and a half ago and I finished Dracula Bunny yesterday.


  1. mmm you 'think' they look really good, they look FANTASTIC, you really do have a natural talent for weaving :)

  2. Thanks Nic. That's a lovely thing to say :oD