Has this year been rough or what?! We don't know about you, but we have to say that crafting, color and creativity have really been a life line for us over the last six months. (Along with being hermits a bit - not going to lie!) When the world gets heavy, it's important to make tangible connections to life, love and hope. One of the most valuable aspects of the work we do here at Created by Elsie B is the opportunity to build community, and we just wouldn't be half what we are without all of you. Today we're thrilled to showcase the lovely and talented Casey Hudson. She's a regular contributor to our Facebook group, lighting up the world with her friendly face and stunning work. She makes the world a better place, and we're so glad to share in that just a little bit.
It's been a while, no? Summer is in full swing at Created by Elsie B headquarters, and we hope you are all doing well and finding plenty of time to spin, knit and create. We've had a lot going on behind the scenes, including our continued focus on diversity education. In our search for resources in this area, we came across one that we just love and wanted to share it with all of you. BIPOC in Fiber is a centralized resource that offers easy access to a wide variety of black and indigenous artists around the world. While there are dozens of ways you can reach out to and promote black voices in the fiber arts, purchasing from diverse makers is one of the very best ways to magnify their reach and appreciate their work. We've found so much to love about this website, and we think you will, too!
This has been a strange and challenging couple of months! While we are blessed here at Created by Elsie B to still be able to operate our small business, we're also distinctly aware that the world is a bit upside down. I'm sure that most of you have heard this quote attributed to Mr. Rogers many times, but it is such a good reminder for all of us. "When I was a boy, and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping." We have been amazed in our area at how we've seen this play out. People are reaching out, stepping up and giving back, and it is downright inspiring. Maybe we're biased, but it really seems that creative people are showing up to the table in a big way, and it makes our hearts swell. Today, we'd like to highlight a few hands-on ways that you can contribute to your local communities in a very immediate and actionable way. Reach out! We can all make a difference in the world!
Wow, what an absolutely change-filled week this has been! Just seven days ago, we were gearing up for the March Year of Fiber orders (they're coming and are SO good!) and reminiscing about how awesome Alt. Summit was. Today, we're all fully versed in quarantine, virtual schooling, social distancing and how to navigate toilet paper shortages. (I'm looking at you, Costco shoppers!) On top of all that, northern Utah experienced an earthquake. (Wait. Are we supposed to shelter in place or run outside? Sheesh!) Still, we're holding it together here at Created by Elsie B and practicing self care, largely due to the perks of being creative people. While the cliche about idle hands is distinctly old fashioned, it comes from a place of truth - keeping yourself busy, occupied and productive is good for you. If you find yourself peeking out from between your blinds and seeing a whole lot of loopy out there, take a deep breath and grab your knitting needles; creative people have measurable advantages - we've got this!
I hope everyone had an inspiring International Women's Day! This last week, I had the awesome opportunity to attend Altitude Summit in Palm Springs, California! Alt. Summit is a conference and community designed to educate and empower women in creative spaces. While it was awesome, it was overwhelming. The people who convinced me to take the leap mentioned that it's like drinking from a fire hose, and they weren't wrong! I knew it was going to be good, but a lot for me. Imposter syndrome hit hard a few weeks before the event. In talking through it with Sam, I realized that the only reason I wouldn't show up was because I was scared not because there wasn't going to be valuable things to learn.
While it's hard to say when and how spinning, knitting and their associated fiber arts originated, history does reflect that people have been playing with wool, silk and yarn for a very long time, with physical evidence of knitted products that go back as far as the 11th century. There are even pieces of art such as Bertram's Knitting Madonna that depict the Virgin Mary clicking away with creativity. Traditionally, the fiber arts have been a very social craft as projects were both a labor of love and a necessity of life, meaning yarn and needles were carried everywhere so that artisans could sneak in a stitch whenever they found opportunity. Though modern manufacturing has changed the way we live significantly, the social life of the fiber arts is still an important and fulfilling part of the craft.