Maine, United States

Making No. 2 / FAUNA Contributor Spotlight: Bristol Ivy
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Making No. 2 / FAUNA Contributor Spotlight: Bristol Ivy

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Enjoy an interview with Bristol Ivy who designed the Throstle Stole for Making No. 2 / FAUNA! 

Tell us how you got started in your craft.

My mother taught me to knit when I was little, to get me to sit still! I was then (and am now) a complete fidgeter, and putting knitting in my hands was my mom’s solution to keep me focused on a single task. I explored lots of different art and craft forms through my childhood and teenage years, but came back to knitting when I was in college. I haven’t put it down since! Designing was also a natural extension for me; I’ve never been great at following instructions and so it almost always made more sense for me to create my own plan than to try to find an existing pattern that matched an idea I had in my head.

What is unique about your designs?

Why are you excited about the project you designed for Making?

I am someone who sees inspiration in very concrete things: existing clothing construction, architecture, the temptation to try an idea and see if it’ll work. So working under a theme such as “fauna” was a wonderful challenge for me. How do you interpret the idea of the movement, structure, and beauty of birds’ wings into a shawl? What elements of a the lines and shape of a clam shell would translate into a wearable, useful garment? It was a fantastic chance to push outside my comfort zone, and I am so thrilled with the results.

What's your favorite color?

Green, green, and more green! I love working with and wearing pretty much every shade of it, and it feels so calming and refreshing all at the same time. I tend towards a lot of neutrals in my everyday wardrobe, and I love the pop of freshness that a little green brings!

If you were going to create something just for fun today, what would it be?

I would love to spend some time playing with all my making loves than knitting—sewing garments, spinning, weaving, embroidering. Right now I’m really hankering for some time with me, some linen, and the loom to weave off some yardage for a dress. I love the idea of being involved with as many different aspects of a project as possible, and I would be so thrilled to take the time to not only make a dress from scratch, but the fabric itself too! (And maybe spin the yarn for it—but that’s maybe a bit of a pipe dream.)

If you could collaborate with three people, who would they be and why?

Oooh, that’s tough! I think the people whose brain I would like to pick the most would be: Katharine Cobey, a knitting artist from here in Maine who understands the structure and geometry of knitting like almost no one else; Issey Miyake, for the way he thinks about fabric and garment construction as malleable and defying convention; and someone like June Hiatt, for her vast knowledge of technique and the whys and wherefores of knitting. I think between the three of them, there would be such a celebration of how to think differently, and then how to present those new ideas perfectly. Imagine the amazingness that could ensue!

Thank you, Bristol!