Thursday, June 27, 2013


Last week I posted a glimpse of a new embroidered necklace and now here it is in full view along with its companion pieces. I call this new series "Alone/Together" and each necklace is made of wool sweaters scraps I found stuffed in a garbage bag here at Nes. I love working with what I have and using materials that echo my environment. I felt compelled to work with these pieces as soon as I found them, which, I think, was the first week I was here. I tried some different things out once June arrived but nothing seemed quite right. Even when I started stitching together the first necklace I continued to struggle. I knew it would require a lot of time and I was feeling impatient. I also knew I did not have enough thread and, although I usually like the challenge of using what's available, the lack worked against me. I tried negotiating a compromise as both limitations felt bigger than they actually were. However, one evening very late at night I knew I had to push forward, I knew I had to commit to the time and to obtaining more thread. So the next day I jumped in a friend's car and drove to Reykjavik just so I could go to Erla for more white DMC floss. Over the course of a few more nights I stayed up very, very late. As I stitched I knew I wanted to make a third piece, but there wasn't a third sweater pattern. I struggled with this for a bit, too, but finally decided to try combining the patterns as alternating links. This final piece will be three times as long as the first and feels rather decadent to wear even as a work-in-progress. I will complete it when I return to the U.S.

I realize now these necklaces are all about the forgotten, the discarded, the unused...They are a vestige of something that once was and I find all of this incredibly appealing and relatable. By turning these throw-aways into jewelry, I'm giving them identity and purpose and I'm remembering them. They are further inspired by the iconic Icelandic wool sweater itself, the cold weather I have experienced here, and the stark color palette of my surroundings.

The pieces measure approximately 66" x 3"x 3", 120" x 3" x 3", and 204" x 3" x 3".

More images on Flickr.

Thanks for reading.

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